According to the man with all the news, Dan Rafael of ESPN.com, Terence Crawford will likely face John Molina Jnr on December 10 in the unbeaten WBC/WBO 140-pound king’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska. Crawford, 29-0(20) dominated Viktor Postol in his last ring outing, back in July, taking the WBC belt he now holds along with his WBO.
Molina Jnr, 29-6(23) scored a big win in his last outing, back in June, when he out-pointed Ruslan Provodnikov over 12-rounds. Crawford will enter the ring on Dec 10 as a considerable favourite, but Molina Jnr is never a warrior who can be totally written off. The big news surrounding this match-up, though, is the fact that it will pit a Top Rank fighter against an Al Haymon fighter, without the need for a purse bid.
The second big talking point is that Crawford, if victorious, may fight superstar Manny Pacquiao some time next year (if Pac-Man emerges victorious in his November 5 fight with extremely live underdog and defending WBO welterweight champ Jessie Vargas). No disrespect to Molina Jnr – a true warrior who has given us some great, great action fights during his career: see his epic with Lucas Matthysse – but Crawford-Pacquiao is a much, much bigger and better fight/match-up.
Crawford is seen by many as the next boxing superstar, and if he takes on and defeats all time great Pacquiao, it will be a classic case of the passing of the torch. Crawford seems to have it all, and he has never really been tested thus far in his dazzling career (Crawford himself says his action battle with Yuriorkis Gamboa was his hardest fight to date) – can Molina Jnr drag him into a firefight and test him? A physical, battle of attrition type of fight seems to be Molina’s best chance, maybe his only chance.
The older man by four years at age 33, Molina has also been in those ageing wars; with Matthyyse, Antonio DeMarco and also losing to Adrien Broner and Humberto Soto. How much has Molina got left? Did the win over a possibly jaded Provodnikov deceive a little? Can Crawford get the stoppage on Dec 10?
Molina is tough, being halted just twice, and Crawford will probably have to settle for yet another wide points decision.