HORN VS CRAWFORD WORTHY OF $4.99 PURCHASE
BY BILL GREEN
Instead of discussing the importance of how big of a fight this Saturday’s WBO Welterweight Title fight between Omaha’s born and raised Terence “Bud” Crawford and Australian, Jeff “The Hornet” Horn really is I still find myself defending the entire promotion by pointing out the enormous upside and benefits the fight will have from being aired on ESPN+.
Let’s start out by providing a clear explanation of exactly what ESPN+ is and why I feel strongly about it. ESPN APP and ESPN+ are available on mobile and TV connected devices and on ESPN.com. The new ESPN app with ESPN+ is available on devices and platforms including Amazon (Fire TV, Fire Stick, Fire Smart Tv’s and Fire Tablets) Android (Android phones, Android TV) Apple (IPhone, IPad, Apple TV and supported in the Apple TV App), Chromecast and Roku.
ESPN+ is the first ever multi-sport, direct-to-consumer subscription streaming service from the Walt Disney Company's Direct-to-Consumer and International segment and ESPN. ESPN+ also offers fans two executive, original boxing programs The boxing Beat with Dan Rafael (Mondays, Weekly) and In This Corner (Twice monthly). In addition, to boxing content, fans that subscribe to ESPN+ get thousands of additional live events, on-demand content and original programming not available on ESPN’s linear TV or digital networks for just $4.99 a month (or $49.99 per year)
I was curious about the on-demand content since rarely can you find original content on YouTube without someone chiming in either trying to advertise or pretending they are all of a sudden the great Jim Lampley. Wow, I was blown away by the content. Here is just some of the content that brought back plenty of boxing goosebumps for me:
Ali vs Foreman
Ali vs Frazier I & II
Ali vs Liston I & II
Ali vs Norton trilogy
Delahoya vs Chavez I
Duran vs Leonard III
Foreman vs Holyfield
Haggler vs Hearns, Hagler vs Leonard I & II
Mayweather vs Gatti, Mayweather vs Judah
Pacquiao vs Barrera, Pacquiao vs Cotto, Pacquiao vs Hatton, Pacquiao vs Marquez II, III & IV
Tyson vs Berbick, vs Bruno I, vs Douglas, vs Holmes vs Spinks and more.
That stuff brings back plenty of PPV house parties, but as we head into a whole new era of technology, what really gets me going is the ability to see a young champion in Terence ‘Bud” Crawfod progress right in front of our eyes with fights such as Crawford vs Campos, vs Gorges, vs Klimov, vs Rios, vs Sanabria, and vs Siqueira. These all were fights that were rarely shown in their entirety to a national audience. The die hard boxing fans would catch them on Top Rank TV and or catch highlights. Fights such as Prescott, Dulorme, Lundy, Molina, and Postol are on there too.
How about the ability to see all the hype and fight build up? Not to mention as previously mentioned you can catch it on any device...
The hype I’m referring to is the following:
Crawford vs Horn Pressor starts at 2:30 PM Thursday June 7th
Crawford vs Horn Weigh In starts at 4:45 PM Friday June 8th
Crawford vs Horn Undercards starts at 5:30 PM Saturday June 9th
(Featuring Omaha’s own Steven “So” Cold Nelson 10-0, Olympic Silver Medalist Shakur Stevenson 6-0, Jose Benavidez 26-0 and California prospect Gabriel Flores Jr 7-0)
Crawford vs Horn Main Event starts at 8:30 PM Saturday June 9th
(Also includes World Ranked Puerto Rican lightweight Jose Pedraza 23-1, and sensational 140lb prospect Maxim “Mad Max” Dadashev 10-0)
Now let's get to the topic at hand despite the lack of respect Vegas odds are giving the champion Jeff Horn (Crawford -1400 over Horn +750) this fight is very interesting. Style wise this is the first opponent TC will face in his new division of 147lbs, secondly Horn has an awkward in your face rough and rugged style that doesn’t allow you to pot-shot from the outside and to dictate the pace as Crawford is accustomed to doing and finally he beat a future first ballot Hall of Farmer in Manny “Pac-man” Pacquiao.
As for Horn, the advantages of speed, skill and power may quite possibly belong to the challenger. But the biggest questions of Horn’s career still comes down to the Pacquiao fight. Did he face an aging and unmotivated Manny? Or even better is Crawford something altogether more special than perhaps a still relevant Pacquiao? For me I rarely rely on odds as I watched Hasim Rahman dethrone a heavy favored Lennox Lewis many moons ago when I cashed in big on those same type of odds.
Bottom line, both fighters are extremely hungry for stardom and have a lot to risk in their careers. That alone has me intrigued. Another bonus is the semi-bad blood that has been slowly building heading into the fight. With the previous cancellation due to Crawford's hand injury which has led to Horn’s team mentioning that they believe Crawford is scared and/or soft. This trash talk is something that the North Omaha native simply hasn’t taken lightly and has vowed enormous punishment delivered as a result.
While the days of PPV are dwindling and rightfully so, we head into an era of real opportunity to kick back and watch a potential great Welterweight fight for $5 bucks, plus all the other mentioned content for a whole month.....ummmm why are we complaining again??
Oh that’s right we want things for free. Well in closing, ESPN has granted that wish too as they are offering a free 7-day free trial for new customers.
I can’t think of a better way to introduce fight fans to the next best fight experience in boxing.
Look for an interview midweek with Team Crawford and the champ himself, Terence “Bud” Crawford!