Head’s up UFC! Terence Crawford has a wrestling and submission game

Newly-crowned welterweight boxing champ Terence Crawford shows another side of his athletic capabilities.

By: Milan Ordoñez | 4 months ago

Terence Crawford is more known for his boxing prowess. “Bud” recently added to his accolades when he scored a ninth-round TKO win over Errol Spence Jr. to bag the undisputed WBC, WBA and IBF welterweight titles. 

But many fans likely haven’t been made aware of Crawford’s wrestling skills. The 35-year-old comes from a family of wrestlers, from his grandfather, father, uncles, and his sons. And as seen on the clips below, he has the chops for it. 

Terence Crawford gives a preview of his wrestling game

In this first clip, Terence Crawford is seen wrestling in a lawn with a younger individual. He had the fundamentals down and he handled himself well enough. 

No successful takedowns or pins happened, but it did show that he could hold his own in an albeit playful wrestling match. 

Below is another clip of Crawford pinning a supposed member of the Kazakhstan wrestling team during a playful session in the boxing gym. 

Terence Crawford has some submissions, too

Outside of his wrestling, Crawford also has a good enough submission game. Here he is in another playful spar with DAZN radio host Akin “Ak” Reyes during an interview. Most of it happens in the opening minutes of the clip below.

And below is a clip posted in 2020 showing Crawford in a living room submission grappling match. Here, he gets the job done via armbar from a back take. 

Terence Crawford in MMA? 

Back in 2020, Crawford opened up the conversation going against Conor McGregor in MMA. At the time, he was considering taking the bout as long as it comes with the right price tag

“To keep it real, Conor’s not a real good wrestler,” he said. “He may kick the shit out of you. You gotta worry about them kicks to the head and them elbows more than him grabbing you. 

“It’d be other things that you’d be having to worry about other than wrestling you.”

But in a media scrum prior to the Spence fight, he says he’s sticking to boxing. 

“I used to wrestle a little bit. But the UFC and MMA have never been something I was planning to do or was training to do,” he told reporters at the UFC Apex. 

July 29 2023,Las Vegas,Nevadas,Nevada,T-Mobile Arena,Klage,Action,Fightnight,Fight Night,Knospe,Bud,Terrence Crawford,Errol Spence Jr. Las Vegas Nevada USA Copyright: xTomxHoganx SpenceCrawford_Hoganphotos607
IMAGO | Tom Hogan

Crawford may not see himself in a mixed martial arts cage, but some of his high-profile peers in boxing believe he’d do well if he made the transition or just fought a one-off. 

“If I had to choose a male boxer to go and compete in MMA, I’d choose Terence Crawford,” said consensus boxing ‘GWOAT’ and PFL fighter Claressa Shields. 

“I feel like with Terence Crawford’s work ethic, and just his background. All his sons wrestle and he grew up wrestling, he has a great boxing background.”

For now, Crawford will fight on as one of boxing’s current crop of elite welterweights. He holds an immaculate record of 40-0 (31 by KO) and plans to keep it that way.

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About the author
Milan Ordoñez
Milan Ordoñez

Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments.

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