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Breakdown: Terence Crawford vs. Felix Diaz fight preview and prediction

HBO’s contribution to this Saturday’s boxing extravaganza sees Terence Crawford back in action. Get all the details on his fight here.

Terence Crawford v Hank Lundy Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

This Saturday is all about the boxing, as Showtime and HBO present a total of 6 fights all evening. Closing out the night will be the HBO main event when Terence Crawford (30-0; 21 KO) faces Felix Diaz (19-1; 9 KO). This is a 140 pound world title fight in the Junior Lightweight division where Crawford holds a bevvy of titles: WBC, WBO, and Ring Magazine. Ring Magazine rates him not only as the division champion, but also at #5 pound for pound; Diaz is unranked. The fight will air live on HBO this Saturday, May 20 with a fight time of 10:15 p.m. ET for the full card. Also included on the broadcast is Raymundo Beltran vs. Jonathan Maicelo.

How do these two stack up?
Crawford: 29 years old | 5’8” | 70" reach | switches stance
Diaz: 33 years old | 5’5" | 67" reach | southpaw stance

What have these two done recently?
Crawford: W - John Molina Jr. (TKO) | W - Viktor Postol (UD) | W - Hank Lundy (TKO)
Diaz: W - Levis Morales (TKO) | W - Sammy Vasquez (UD) | L - Lamont Peterson (MD)

How did these two get here?

It was 2014 where Terence Crawford really broke onto the scene, winning the Fight of the Year against Yuriorkis Gamboa, and taking home Fighter of the Year honors on many ballots. He established himself as the undeniable #1 at 135 pounds, then moved up and is now clearly the best at 140. In this era of numerous world titles, Crawford is the real deal, the true champion in two divisions. He’s gained confidence as a boxer during this rise, evolving from a great technician to a powerful fighter who can turn a technical affair into a dogfight at any moment. Crawford is a deceptively good fighter who can do it all in the ring, and he shows no sign of stopping. With no more marquee fights at 140 pounds, you have to assume a step up to the big names at 147 looms.

Felix Diaz is a 2008 Olympic Gold medalist for the Dominican Republic. With that credit, he was of course a noted prospect when he turned pro, and has had a solid if unspectacular career. Biggest wins come against Adrian Granados and Sammy Vasquez, but his real marquee fight is his 2015 loss to Lamont Peterson, a very good fighter who Diaz made work for a tough win. While he looked quite good against Peterson and seemed ready to deliver on his potential, that fight is the exception rather than the rule.

What can fans expect?

There’s really nothing at all in Felix Diaz to indicate that this will be a tough fight for Crawford. The champ is a clear notch above here, and there’s really no reason to think Diaz has a chance. He’s a crafty enough fighter that Crawford may have to figure things out, but he will. Watch for Crawford to at some point early to get comfortable, switch from orthodox to southpaw, and start getting loose and throwing heavy to make this an easy night.

Prediction: Crawford, KO, R5

Who should watch?

Like the Gary Russell fight on Showtime, this is a spotlight fight for a top level talent. Tune in if you want to see that talent, and also to see what he says is next in his post-fight interview.

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