Originally written on The Queensbury Rules  |  Last updated 4/5/15
This time, Ricky Burns couldn't benefit from an opponent quizzically quitting, like Jose Gonzalez did, or from hometown judging in Glasgow, like the kind that saved him from a loss against Raymundo Beltran. Terence Crawford was too much for Burns Saturday on AWE, even if he wasn't as good as he could've or should've been, and he got the unanimous decision win. Both men started the fight off like they needed to, with the taller Burns continuously pumping out his jab and Crawford responding with uncharacteristically aggressive power punching combinations. For some reason, Crawford more or less disappeared in the 2nd and 3rd, fighting from a southpaw stance that didn't seem to help him much. But by the 4th, when Crawford resumed his aggression and backed up Burns to force him into a defensive shell, it was all Crawford. Burns tried to rally in the 9th, and won the 10th on my scorecard and some others, but Crawford snuffed out his momentum in the 11th and beat him up in the 12th. The score of 117-111 was the same as mine, with the two 116-112 scorecards a touch too generous to Burns. To hear Sky Sports' Jim Watt tell it, this was a "different" Burns, an underconfident Burns, a Burns worried about the jaw Beltran broke. You'd think he hadn't seen Burns' performances against Beltran (who deserved to win in one of the robberies of 2013) or how Burns was getting dominated by Gonzalez, a fighter with no real track record. Nope, this was the same Burns we've seen lately -- a pugilist apparently past his best days, still capable of showing flashes of grit or effective yet ragged boxer-puncher business. Burns overachieved for a time, and it was an impressive run. These days, he apparently doesn't have it. For as clearly as he won, for all his speed and schooling, Crawford comes away from the by far best victory of his career a bit of a headscratcher. He had to know that a laissez faire approach was poisonous to his chances of winning on foreign soil, yet showed that attitude early. He turned up the activity from the 4th on, but still had stretches where he didn't keep the pressure on his man; it took Burns catching him with a good one here and there to make Crawford respond with gusto. I wonder if it's about temperament for him, or maybe it's stamina -- in the 12th, he went on full attack, and it didn't take long for him to get winded. Either way, he's in the discussion for the top lightweight in a division that is thin gruel right now. Yet it's hard to imagine him beating Miguel Vazquez fighting like this. As someone with hype as the potential to become the pound-for-pound best American fighter, we needed more from Crawford than we got Saturday. And while he delivered more action than he has of late, Burns had something to do with that, so whatever the nature of his temporary exile from HBO, it's not clear that if lack of excitement was to blame, he solved that problem, either. On the undercard, blue chip heavyweight prospect Anthony Joshua made easy work of Hector Avila, stopping him in one round with a big counter left. Joshua, in just his fifth fight, appears all the world like a potential superstar and has the personality and look to compliment his size, athleticism and Olympic pedigree. But it is very, very early, and we learned nothing from this bout that we didn't know already. Promoter Eddie Hearn and Sky tried to sell Avila as the man who went nine rounds with Dereck Chisora a year ago, neglecting the fact that he'd been stopped twice since, including once in the 1st round, by fighters far inferior to Chisora. Hearn said they'd be looking at Michael Sprott or Matt Skelton next, two reasonable step-ups and reasonably advanced opponents for a prospect at this stage of his career. Other than the main event, the rest of the card was loaded up with bores and mismatches (which includes Joshua's), save perhaps Scott Cardle's stoppage of Paul Appelby. Usually you celebrate a seven-fight telecast, but it felt interminable because of the nature of the matchmaking. 
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Angels could pursue action against Josh Hamilton for violating contract

Buchholz receives letter from MLB about batter’s box violation

Los Angeles Clippers: Best basketball, right time

Boston GM says Bruins lack ‘killer instinct’

Eddie George: Tennessee Titans in disarray


Allen Iverson allegedly could drop $30K in one strip club visit

Sharper to be subject to penile arousal testing during probation

Attorney: Winston 'not ready to be an NFL player off the field'

Browns center Alex Mack believes in Johnny Manziel

Derek Fisher: Knicks can win 63 games next season

Lauren Hill dies from brain cancer

Blazers eye playoffs with one week left in regular season

It’s time for the Masters to let us watch all of the Masters

Stevan Ridley gets Jets tattoo, which he totally won’t regret

Mark Cuban attempts to solve NBA’s tanking problem

Russell Westbrook, Anthony Davis and the race for 8th place

Twins announcer Bert Blyleven apologizes for ripping Detroit

Did Steph Curry clinch the MVP award Thursday night?

Daily MLB pitcher duels: April 10

Fade to Black (and Yellow): Troy Polamalu calls it a career

Coach of the Year: Steve Kerr or Mike Budenholzer?

Power rankings: Top five NBA title contenders

James Harden: 'I feel as though I am the MVP'

Boxing News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Angels could pursue action against Hamilton

Clippers: Best basketball, right time

It’s time for the Masters to let us watch all of the Masters

Rajon Rondo used to be Laced Cheeba

Lauren Hill dies from brain cancer

Top five NBA title contenders

Troy Polamalu calls it a career

Three games into the season, Gonzalez’s bat is pure fire

Greatest Masters champs of all-time

Harbaugh shows Michigan 'American Sniper'

Rousey responds to Walmart book ban

Tsarnaev found guilty in Boston Marathon bombing

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.