Terence Crawford, one of the top pound-for-pound boxers in the world, puts his WBO and WBC junior welterweight titles on the line Saturday in Lincoln, Neb., against Julius Indongo, who holds the IBF and WBA junior welterweight belts.
Terence Crawford returns to the ring on Saturday in a 140-pound unification fight against fellow titleholder Julius Indongo in a fight that will take place in Crawford’s backyard of Lincoln, Neb. Both are unbeaten, but Crawford (31-0, 22 KOs) has a far superior resume than his counterpart Indongo (22-0, 11 KOs) and the sportsbooks have immediately taken notice and set the odds accordingly.
What’s fascinating is that Crawford currently sits as a -2250 favorite, according to Bovada. Sure, conventional wisdom will have you believe that one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world should easily dismantle an undefeated opponent who has primarily fought in his hometown of Namibia and the most significant name in his resume is Ricky Burns. But, to compare, Indongo at +950 is a far bigger underdog than Conor McGregor (+325) heading into his fight with Floyd Mayweather. The difference between Indongo and McGregor is that one of them is a world champion boxer while the other has never had a professional boxing match.
Nevertheless, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that there is little to no betting value with Crawford. He has advantages in age, speed, punching power and ring IQ, which should all lead to an eventual stoppage late in the fight. Crawford has a pretty significant mean streak when he recognizes that his opponent is in danger. It’s not of the one-punch knockout variety, but it comes in swarms and overwhelms an opponent.
But it’s going to be very difficult to pick a round for Crawford to end this because Indongo has never faced anything like the Nebraskan. If you’re looking for value (and a shot in the dark that’s based more on the judges’ ineptitude than Indongo’s skills), take a hard look at the fight ending in a draw. Currently, you can find this at +2500.
It’s not completely outside the realm of reality where Indongo stays in the fight and manages to steal a few rounds. He’s tall and rangy with a decent skill set that has the ability to stay in the fight. He should be overmatched but the fact that we’ve seen very little of Indongo suggests that there are more questions about his skill set than answers.
If he can use his jab to keep range and not allow Crawford to close in, there’s a possibility that he could snare away a few rounds. It’s still quite unlikely that he’ll win a decision but, as we saw in the Jeff Horn vs. Manny Pacquiao fight, things can go awry pretty quick.
If there’s any value to be had, it’s there. Otherwise, just enjoy the show.Free Boxing Long-Shot Pick: Draw (+2500)Best Line Offered: BetOnline