Terence Crawford might be the best boxer in the world today

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - MARCH 1 :  Terence Crawford celebrates his victory over Rick Burns during the WBO World Lightweight Championship Boxing match at the Gl

Some say the notion of 'pound-for-pound' is pointless. Some say Gennady Golovkin holds the crown. Others say Terence Crawford...

Golovkin is of course a remarkable force of nature - the Kazakh's smiling brutality has earned him perhaps even greater US exposure than Crawford, who was born, raised and still lives in Omaha, Nebraska. In fact, The Ring magazine rates Crawford only sixth in their pound-for-pound list behind Roman Gonzalez, Sergey Kovalev, Golovkin, Andre Ward and Guillermo Rigondeaux.

Of course, each of the aforementioned fighters are elite fighters worthy of mention in a discussion over the best fighter on the planet. Furthermore, bar Golovkin, they are five fighters whose fame outside of hardcore boxing circles is far outweighed by their achievements in the sport. Flyweight Gonzalez (ranked No 1) has stopped 38 of 44 opponents - but could you pick him out in a crowd?

Boxer Roman Gonzalez of Nicaragua (C) celebrates after defeating Edgar Sosa of Mexico
Image: Roman Gonzalez of Nicaragua (C) is ranked the best in the world by Ring Magazine

Importantly, when it comes to media profile (or whatever the current term is), Nicaragua's Gonzalez, Russia's Kovalev and Cuba's Rigondeaux are at the disadvantage of not being American. Former super-middleweight king Ward is famous for beating the likes of Mikkel Kessler, Arthur Abraham and Carl Froch so given that Crawford is a more destructive fighter, is his lack of big-name opponents the reason behind his relative anonymity?

After an amateur career that saw him exchange victories with Danny Garcia, win gold at the 2007 US Pan-American Games but ultimately fail to win a spot at the 2008 Olympics, Crawford turned professional at the age of 20 and took less than 30 seconds to stop Brian Cummings on debut.

Gennady Golovkin could be facing Saul Alvarez next year
Image: Gennady Golovkin is one of the world's most recognisable boxers

Technically, Crawford oozes talent. Boxrec lists him as orthodox but when he blasted Henry Lundy out inside five rounds in his latest defence at the weekend, the damage came out of the southpaw stance with the first knockdown a textbook left cross straight down the pipe. A fighter with a smoother style capable of changing stance and tactics with such ease is hard to find.

After breezing through his first 19 opponents, it was in 2013 that the boxing world started to take him seriously. On the undercard of Brandon Rios v Mike Alvarado II, Crawford switch-hit his way to a classy points victory over Amir Khan's conqueror Breidis Prescott and followed that up by retiring tough Mexican Alejandro Sanabria via sixth-round stoppage.

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Terence Crawford proved too classy for Breidis Prescott (L)
Image: Crawford proved too classy for Breidis Prescott (L)

In the wake of shattering the unbeaten record of ranked Russian Andriy Klimov, Crawford was handed a shot at WBO lightweight champion Ricky Burns. Burns had looked unstoppable in years previous as he swept aside the likes of Michael Katsidis and Kevin Mitchell but Crawford silenced Glasgow with a one-sided points victory to become world champion for the first time.

One man who was keen to challenge him quickly was Raymundo Beltran, who had broken Burns' jaw before being denied the crown by a controversial split draw. After halting Yuriorkis Gamboa in nine in his homecoming maiden defence, Crawford outmanoeuvred Beltran in style in November 2014 - again in front of his adoring fans in Omaha.

Crawford (L) took Ricky Burns' WBO lightweight title in 2014
Image: Crawford (L) took Ricky Burns' WBO lightweight title in 2014

Last year, Crawford stepped up in weight to super-lightweight and was straight in to a world title fight - facing Thomas Dulome for the vacant WBO belt he still holds today. On that occasion, Crawford executed his emphatic stoppage from the orthodox stance; a classic range-finding jab followed by a huge right cross in a mirror image of the combination that stunned on Saturday night.

It's not like Crawford's talent has prevented him from proving his chin, either; Dierry Jean caught him with a few very solid-looking shots in October last year before being outgunned in 10.

Crawford stopped Dulome (L) to earn his current world title
Image: Crawford stopped Dulome (L) to earn his current world title

Amiable with the media and flashing the kind of wry smiles that suggest he knows things most don't, Crawford seemingly has it all; speed, power, defensive skills, a solid chin and two feet planted firmly on the Nebraskan dirt. With his Box Office pull still yet to catch-up to his success in the ring, the queue to pit wits against him isn't brimming with enthusiasts.

But if reports that legends Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez are considering him as an opponent prove correct, Crawford may soon have occasion to ensure his recognition as one of the world's top fighters is unavoidable.

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