Antics of Terence Crawford’s trainer riles foe’s connections

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Dierry Jean couldn’t find his passport, so he wasn’t able to travel from Canada to appear at Monday’s news conference announcing his October fight against unbeaten WBO junior welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford.

But Jean’s image made it to Nebraska. Crawford co-manager and trainer Bryan McIntyre held up a poster of the fighter, scribbled over his face and laid the poster on the floor.

“That’s what I think of Dierry Jean. For real,” McIntyre said.

Crawford, 26-0 with 18 knockouts, will be making his first defense of his junior welterweight title in the Oct. 24 HBO bout at CenturyLink Center. Crawford also holds the WBO lightweight belt.

Jean, 29-1 with 20 knockouts, has won four straight since losing a 12-round decision to Lamont Peterson last year.

Camille Estephan of Eye of the Tiger Promotions said Jean asked for the fight, and he welcomes the opportunity to come to Crawford’s hometown. Estephan noted that he himself has visited the CenturyLink Center for investor Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting, and he expects another enjoyable evening in two months.

Jean’s trainer, Mike Moffa, said that while Crawford is a great champion, he is beatable.

“You’ve got speed, you’re intelligent, you’ve got power, you’re slick,” Moffa said, looking at Crawford. “I would say you’re even more complete than (Floyd) Mayweather. It’s the truth, man. Sometimes you get a little too excited in that ring and put (out) too much for the fans. That’s why HBO loves you. We’ve been watching you, some videos, and we’ll find a way to leave with that belt, Terence.”

Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti then took a playful jab of his own.

“This is what he looks like,” Moretti said, holding up the Jean poster and then laying it on the floor to look like a knocked-out boxer, “and this is what he might look like on Oct. 24.”

Moffa yelled, “Never did he go down in his life.”

When McIntyre picked up the poster, scrawled over Jean’s face and put it back on the floor, Estephan took umbrage.

“You made it personal, putting this paper on the ground. Big mistake, buddy. Karma is going to get you, I’m going to make sure of that,” Estephan said.

Crawford said Jean will be in for a long night.

“Yeah, he’s a good fighter. I take nothing away from any fighter,” Crawford said. “Oct. 24, I’ll be 100 percent ready, probably more than 100 percent. But mark my words, he will lose.”

This story corrects the spelling of Mike Moffa’s last name.

Manny Pacquiao loses WBO welterweight title on points to Jeff Horn

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BRISBANE, Australia (AP) Manny Pacquiao lost his WBO welterweight world title to Jeff Horn in a stunning, unanimous points decision in a Sunday afternoon bout billed as the Battle of Brisbane in front of more than 50,000 people.

The 11-time world champion entered the fight at Suncorp Stadium as a hot favorite but got more than he bargained for against the 29-year-old former schoolteacher.

Still, Pacquiao dominated the later rounds and the result could have gone his way.

Pacquiao’s long-time trainer Freddie Roach predicted the fight would be short and sweet but Horn – unbeaten in his 17 previous professional fights – applied pressure by winning some of the early rounds and Pacquiao needed treatment during the 6th and 7th rounds for a cut on the top of his head that resulted from a clash of heads.

The judges scored the fight 117-111, 115-113 and 115-113, with Horn immediately calling out Floyd Mayweather Jr., after the fight, declaring himself “no joke.”

Roach had said earlier in the week that he’d think about advising Pacquioa to retire if he lost the fight, but that would depend on how he fought.

Pacquiao’s camp had talked about a rematch with Mayweather if he got past Horn, hoping to avenge his loss on points in the 2015 mega fight. That seems to be a distant chance now.

Pacquiao, who entered the fight with a record of 59-6-2, 38 knockouts, was defending the WBO title he won on points against Jessie Vargas last November.

Mayweather vs. McGregor odds: Sportsbooks set betting lines, props for fight

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Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor stand to collect a massive payday whether their superfight is a charade or a combat sports classic, and there’s plenty of upside for bettors too.

With the bout set, Mayweather is a -600 moneyline favorite against the +400 underdog McGregor at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.  Mayweather will put a 49-0 ring record on the line in the August 26 bout at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, while McGregor, a UFC champion at two weights, might prove a point just by having a decent showing.

The moneyline has tightened considerably since the first rumors about the fight. Last November, Mayweather opened at -2250 and McGregor opened at +950. Evidently, many MMA fans found McGregor irresistible at that price, as it steadily dropped, falling to +450 by late April. That was also the point where the moneyline on ‘Money’ came down to -700.

The over/under on rounds is 9.5. A 10-round fight is uncharted waters for McGregor, but 13 of Mayweather’s last 14 fights have gone at least 10 rounds. Twelve have gone the full 12 rounds; the Mayweather-McGregor betting odds on whether the fight goes the distance pays +125 if it does, and -175 if it’s stopped early.

McGregor also pays +120 if he wins by decision, which is the standard outcome for his bouts against full-time boxers. McGregor’s method-of-victory props include +700 for a knockout and +3300 for victory by decision.

There is little in the way of past performance to go on here, since McGregor hasn’t boxed since he was a teenager in Ireland. Mayweather’s defensive skills should allow him to parry any early onslaught from McGregor, who is a knockout artist in the UFC octagon and rarely has fights go more than two rounds.

The round prices offer the most potential profit for Mayweather backers. One can assume that the skilled defensive fighter might dance around while McGregor goes out hard. It might be prudent to scale down expectations of a quick finish – +3300 for Mayweather winning in Round 1, +2500 for Round 2 – and look at the slightly later rounds. Rounds 4 through 6 are listed at +1600 and +1400.

While Mayweather’s round prices trace a reverse parabola, McGregor’s round prices are relatively stable. The Irishman offers +4000 for a win in Round 1, or each one from Rounds 4-7. There is a slight drop to +3300 for both Round 2 and 3.

Another way to bet on the Mayweather-McGregor fight is the 4.99 million total for pay-per-view buys. The over hitting would require beating the audience for Mayweather’s 2015 fight against Manny Pacquaio (4.6 million). McGregor also holds the UFC’s PPV record of 1.65 million, set at UFC 202 in August 2016

With boxing and MMA fans creating a larger fanbase and the event being scheduled for the dog days of late August – before the NFL and college football blot out everything else on the sports landscape – 5 million buys seems doable.