Jorge Linares vs. Anthony Crolla II was not a rematch the world was demanding for the simple reason that after their first fight, there seemed to be little doubt how this one would play out. And indeed, it went pretty much exactly according to script.
Just as he did when they first met, Jorge Linares showed that he was the definitively more talented fighter today, outboxing Crolla convincingly over the course of 12 rounds to take an easy decision win. Judges had it 118-109 across the board. To win this one, Crolla needed to make it rough and ugly and hopefully cut Linares, but he was never able to make that happen. Instead, Linares was on all fight, showing the kind of technical skill that has earned him so much praise in his career.
The highlight of the fight came in round 7, when Linares used a great left uppercut to badly stagger Crolla and send him crashing to the mat, putting a clear exclamation mark on his victory. Check out the knockdown below, or here on Twitter:
And here are highlights from the first half of the fight which show both men working the body, but also the superior speed and skill of Linares (click here to view on Twitter):
With this win, Linares retains his status as the division’s #1, along with his WBA Lightweight title. Hopefully, next up for him will be undefeated WBC champion Mikey Garcia. Garcia is two fights into his return to the sport, and has quickly re-established himself as one of the best. A Linares vs Garcia fight would be an absolute must-watch.