Theater of the unexpected strikes again at MSG on Saturday night.
In round six, a left hook by Terence Crawford hit Amir Khan in the groin, in the main event of an ESPN PPV. He indicated he didn’t want to continue, so the fight, promted by Bob Arum’s Top Rank, was halted and Crawford declared the victor, because Khan quit.
I know, weird….One would think that because the fight ended off a foul, a low blow, even though it was not deemed intentional, that we’d go to the cards. But no…Crawford gets the win, in strange fashion.
The USA chants were countered by Khan chants as round one kicked off. We saw Bud as usual be patient. Khan fired a right to the body, and Bud looked so chill, sent Khan down.
A right hand, bang, on his butt. He got up, was worried. They traded hard and nasty to end the round. A right hand on the chin buzzed Khan badly. The left hook just tipped him over. Great first round…
In the second, Khan didn’t enage as much. He would, and he’d flurry, and square up. To the third, we saw Bud as lefty, and things had settled from the frenetic first. Trainer Virgil Hunter had told Khan to work smarter, not harder.
In the fourth, lefty Bud was patient. He stuck out his tongue, caught Khan, went righty, caught him again. Big Bud round, though a Khan connect late got his rooters buzzing. In the fifth, lefty Bud jabbed, and Khan was getting banged around. Again, a late Khan connect, this time a right lead, gave his boosters hope.
To round six…we saw Khan get hit low. He got a break…The super slow mo showed a left hook aimed at the groin. And no mas…Khan indicates that he can’t continue.
A rain of boos hits the ring, as the 14,091 in the joint make their displeasure known. They wanted a conclusive ending, not this bizarro ending off a foul.
“The fight I want next is Errol Spence,” Crawford said after. “Whenever he is ready, he can come and get it.”
“I could tell I was breaking him down. It was just a matter of time. I just took my time. I was disappointed the corner stopped the fight in that manner, but Virgil is a great coach, and he was looking out for his fighter. I know he didn’t want to go out like that.”
Also: “Benavidez and Gamboa were 10 times faster than him.”
Said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum: “We want to fight Errol Spence. Everyone wants the fight. There is one guy stopping it, and that is Al Haymon.”
“I now know why Terence is one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world,” Khan said afterwards.
THEN: You gotta check out the post-fight presser. Crawford challenged Khan, about quitting.