TERENCE CRAWFORD knocked out Kell Brook in spherical 4 to retain his WBO welterweight world title.
The American pound-for-pound star – returning after a yr out – began gradual in Las Vegas’ empty MGM Grand.
However in spherical 4, after a counter proper hand, Brook was despatched rocking again and handed a standing rely.
Regardless of preventing on, deadly finisher Crawford swarmed the challenger with a barrage of photographs inflicting the struggle to be stopped.
After his thirty seventh profession win, he mentioned: “I used to be making an attempt to gauge the space. He had good way.
“I used to be looking for my rhythm in between getting my distance collectively. That’s why it was so aggressive at first. I couldn’t get my photographs off.
“Kell is an amazing expertise. He got here and he tried to take my title. He was in form.
“He made the load. There have been no excuses to be placed on the desk. He got here off of three wins.
“He misplaced to the higher man.”
Brook, preventing at welterweight for the primary time since 2017, made a vibrant begin and bossed the primary two rounds with an expertly timed jab.
He even threatened with straight proper arms, as Crawford went within the southpaw stance to alter up his recreation plan.
By spherical three, the 33-year-old champion started to seek out his vary and rhythm higher, however Brook’s jab was nonetheless inflicting him an issue.
The struggle then immediately turned on its head a minute into the fourth as Crawford landed a wonderfully timed proper hand within the southpaw stance.
Brook, 34, was despatched reeling backwards and took punishment on the ropes earlier than a standing eight-count was known as.
He was given the possibility to struggle on however was nonetheless dazed as Crawford – who got here into the struggle with a 75 per cent end price – sensed blood.
The Nebraskan landed one other proper hook excessive and after a string of left arms, Brook was saved by the referee.
Following the loss, he mentioned: “By no means in my profession, no person has ever completed that to me in sparring or something.
“It was one in all them… I bought caught with a shot I didn’t see. I’m gutted as a result of no person may’ve gotten me in higher situation.
“I used to be bang on the restrict. Possibly I may’ve been a bit extra relaxed and unfastened and let the photographs go.”
Crawford’s promoter Bob Arum revealed he’ll try to put the WBO champion within the ring with Errol Spence Jr.
However Arum fears WBC and IBF champ Spence – who fights Danny Garcia on December 5 – will attempt to keep away from the unification.
He mentioned: “Errol Spence will attempt to keep away from Crawford for so long as he can.
“You noticed the efficiency tonight. He’ll take out Spence in the identical variety of rounds as he did Kell Brook.”
Crawford was in line to problem WBA champion Manny Pacquiao in Qatar this yr, however the coronavirus pandemic KO’d the mega-fight.
Regardless of the cancellation, the unbeaten American needs to re-visit negotiations with the Filipino icon.
He mentioned: “I need Pacquiao. I need to revisit that struggle. That was a struggle that ought to’ve occurred proper now.
“However being that the pandemic occurred, they usually weren’t going to permit followers within the Center East, they needed to put a maintain to that.
“Every part was 95 p.c completed. We had the venue. The cash was nearly there. It wasn’t fairly there. That was the one factor we have been ready on.”
Arum added: “It was set to happen within the Center East earlier than the minister of well being stopped it.
“However we’re [now] in talks need do it within the Center East earlier than or after Ramadan.”