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Bob Arum working on October 13 title defence for Terence Crawford, four names in the mix at present: Kavaliauskas, Matthysse, Benavidez, Adames

Promoter Bob Arum is working on an October 13 fight for recently crowned WBO welterweight champ Terence Crawford, and so far the Top Rank boss has four names on his short-list – and a quite unexpected list it is too in some ways. According to a piece by Dan Rafael of ESPN.com, Arum is thinking about putting the unbeaten pound-for-pound entrant in with one of: Egidijus Kavaliauskas, Jose Benavidez, Carlos Adames or Lucas Matthysse.

Matthysse may be the most instantly recognisable name of the four potential challengers; Matthysse actually holding a version of the WBA welterweight belt. Arum remains sceptical over the scheduled Matthysee-Manny Pacquiao fight set for July 15, and if it falls apart it could be Matthysse who gets the big fight with Crawford. As for the other three fighters, unbeaten Lithuanian hope Kavaliauskas, 19-0(16) faces Juan Carlos Abreu on July 7 and Arum is waiting to see how the 29 year old looks. “He could be the opponent,” Arum said.

Benavidez of Phoenix is also unbeaten, at 27-0(18) and the 26 year old has had his name linked with Crawford as far as his being a potential challenger before now. As would be the case with Kavaliauskas, Benavidez would be taking one big step up in class if he fought Crawford. As for Adames, the man from The Dominican Republic is young at age 24 and at 14-0(11) he seems to be too inexperienced for a big fight with Crawford at this stage.


Of the four names Arum listed – and there could be more names added to the short-list in time – maybe the man from Lithuanian with the unpronounceable name is the most intriguing. If the contender who now lives in Oxnard does the business against the tough and never stopped Abreu, 21-3-1(19), in a fight that will contest the NABF welterweight strap, Kavaliauskas could find himself in the ring with a fighter many fans list as their pick for the current best on the planet, pound-for-pound.

Would you prefer to see Crawford in with a more familiar name or might it prove interesting seeing “Bud” work out and try to stop an emerging possible star of the future?