Monday, March 27, 2023  |



Crawford views himself as No. 2 pound-for-pound fighter in sport

Crawford tags John Molina Jr. Photo by Mikey Williams/ Top Rank

As much as he tries to give off the impression he doesn’t care about public opinion, two-belt junior welterweight champion Terence Crawford is clearly attuned to other’s pound-for-pond lists.

And while he’s featured in many pundit’s Top 10 (he’s No. 5 in the RING’s ratings), if Crawford was compiling his own personal list, he would put himself at No. 2, behind Andre Ward on the list of the best in the sport. In a roll-call that is winding and unpredictable, Crawford ranked Roman (Chocolatito) Gonzalez No. 3, Timothy Bradley controversially No. 4 and Gennady Golovkin, grudgingly, fifth. Vasyl Lomachenko barely made his Top 10, he said.

“I know I’m No. 2 in my personal list,” Crawford told a small group of reporters on Tuesday in Manhattan before a press conference to formally announce his May 20 bout with Felix Diaz at Madison Square Garden on HBO. “Andre Ward is still No. 1. Kovalev lost the fight. Andre Ward won it and that’s it.”

Asked about Lomachenko, who promoter Bob Arum has described as a sublime talent, Crawford’s answer was surprising. “I can’t put him in the Top 10. Well, Top 10 I probably can put him in.” Crawford paused and thought for a second. “I’m a big fan of Lomachenko,” he said. “Like a real big fan. But you look at who he fought and I feel like Mikey Garcia destroyed those guys and Lomachenko, he’s getting more fame for the guys that Mikey Garcia destroyed that he’s fighting right now and I feel like that’s the same thing that’s happening to me.”

He added of Lomachenko, “How can you be your No. 1 when he’s had nothing but seven fights?” Lomachenko (7-1, 5 KOs) fights on Saturday on HBO against Jason Sosa. Crawford dismissed Golovkin as a pound-for-pound leader because he’s only dominated one weight class. “When I think of pound-for-pound, I’m thinking of different weight classes,” Crawford said. “Triple-G has conquered one weight class. He wouldn’t move up to fight Froch or Andre Ward when he was at 168.” He then put Golovkin at No. 5.

He put Gonzalez at No. 3, despite his controversial loss on March 18. “I thought he won the fight,” Crawford said. He then dipped his toe into controversy when he put Bradley, a close friend, at No. 4. “He’s beaten everyone there is to beat except Mayweather, he don’t get no credit,” Crawford said. “He took over 140, took over 147 and just lost to Pacquiao.” Crawford then put Pacquiao at No. 6, even though he beat Bradley twice and said that Guillermo Rigondeaux and Mikey Garcia are also Top 10 talents.