All photos by Porfirio Barron Jr./RBRBoxing
Terrence Crawford (26-0, 18 KOs) took on Thomas Dulorme (22-2, 14 KOs) for the 140-pound WBO title on Saturday, April 18, 2014 in a 12-round bout.
The fight took place at College Park Center in Arlington, TX, and was shown on HBO Boxing After Dark.
Fresh off a stellar run in 2014, including being named the BWAA Fighter of the Year, Crawford was determined to cement his status as the next boxing phenom.
When legendary announcer Michael Buffer gave the signal, Dulorme strutted out to the ring in a spartan’s helmet and white loincloth over his boxing trunks. The loud show of confidence was somewhat muted when Crawford’s turn came to make his entrance. Half the arena erupted with cheer when Crawford walked in, deep in the heart of a big posse.
“It felt like everybody in there was from Omaha,” Crawford said after the fight, alluding to his hometown.
Round 1 started with Dulorme taking initiative with swift, combustive punches to the body. The blows took on a tone of cat and mouse, both fighters bobbing and weaving before landing consecutive punches on one another.
By Round 2, the Puerto Rican contender’s speed was considerable, at times even landing him the lead in hits, but Crawford moved almost leisurely, never showing strain. The Omaha native countered his opponent’s hooks and jabs, throwing shots to the body without an adjustment from Dulorme.
Crawford and Dulorme finally started slugging it out near Round 3’s completion. The tone was still playful–at one point, Crawford flashed a smile while narrowly ducking a punch from Dulorme. The score was close through Round 5 when Crawford taunted his opponent, throwing his arms up in invitation.
The open invite foreshadowed a shift in Round 6. Dulorme, recoiling after taking a punch, took a stupefying blow to the head from Crawford. Crawford followed up with a brutal barrage of hits that sent Dulorme to the floor three times.
Staggering through from head to toe, Dulorme struggled to get back in the fight before the referee called off the bout.
“My coaches told me to fight like that,” Crawford said. “They told me when you go out there don’t give it all to him yet. Just touch him. Then as you can see in the sixth round he told me to pick it up. ”
In the press conference after the match, Crawford, the new Junior Welterweight champion of the world, cited having fun as what gave him focus to win. When asked why he didn’t change stances during the fight, Crawford reasoned, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. If it worked from Round 1 to Round 6, why try something new?”
“I feel like I had a hell of a performance,” Crawford said. “My punching power was overshadowed [in the press], but I feel versatile. As long as I train, I can do whatever.”
Dulorme, bruised from the fight, confessed that he didn’t see the knockout coming.
“I was doing the fight I was trained to do in the gym,” “The shot, I didn’t see, and the shot got me.”
Both fighters currently plan to rest following the bout, but Crawford looks prepared to have an even more successful year in boxing than the last.