The Scarecrow Files - A George Crowcroft Special.

Discussion in 'Euro Boxing Forum' started by George Crowcroft, Jan 20, 2020.


  1. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 1: Harada 10-9

    Masahiko comes out like a ball of fire, working a frequent left, peppering Éder with rights and the occasional left hook downstairs. Jofre moving to the left, trying to negate Harada's wonderful lead hand, and throwing some counters. Clearly more active than the first of the last bout. Harada landing often, even if they're just glancing blows, the jab's getting through. Jofre also landing nice but being clearly out-worked.


    Round 2: Jofre 10-9 (19-19)

    Again Masahiko comes out fast, bouncing on the balls of his feet, darting in and out of range ever so smoothly and shooting that razor sharp jab out. But Jofre's got it covered, he starts countering nicely, especially inside with his short, tight circular shots. Harada keeps up the aggressive pace but is continuingly getting hit in return. He backs off. Jofre mixing it up, throwing his own jab and stalking. Harada pouces at the end and is countered yet again.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020 at 8:06 AM
  2. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 3: Harada 10-9 (29-28 Harada)

    Bolts off the stool and fires! Harada's style is impossible to dislike. Masahiko keeping that lead moving almost all round, but at the start he burrowed his way in with jabs and kept flitting in and out of range, tapping Jofre with right hands and left hooks. Jofre throwing back hard, landing in patches. Harada takes the foot off the gas and slows down, he takes a step back and moves to the left, steering Jofre around. Jofre's 1-2 came into play here, making sure Harada knew what was waiting for him but Masahiko kept closing the gap, landing, turning the angle and getting back out. Excellent work from him. When he reapplied the pressure, he forced Éder back up to the ropes and landed well again. Severely out-working Jofre in this one.
     
  3. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 4: Even 10-10 (39-38 Harada)

    Excellent round from both combatants! Lots of action here. Harada on him from the start, shifting in, closing the gap and landing flush. Éder moving back to the ropes, landing some lovely short counters, especially an eye-catching 1-2, left uppercut. Backed up against the ropes, Éder was being out-hustled, but exchanged well, twisting into his hooks, right hands and landing cleaner. Both have excellent defences but Éder's showing more, it was subtle, but very effective. Harada pouring on punches in bunches, lots of hard short shots landing but when Jofre threw back Masahiko seemed to lose the exchange. Too much volume here though, Harada threw way more here, can definitely see it going his way here.
     
  4. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 5: Harada 10-9 (49-47)

    Up again fast, steady jab by Jofre. Harada setting his own pace again, lets his left rip. Harada pushing Éder back, keeping his man on the ropes. Very high workrate from Harada here, tons of hard shots to Jofre's body. Back to centre ring, Jofre throwing jabs but Masahiko snapping a counter jab in his face. Much much sharper from Harada here. Far too much workrate from him, Jofre couldn't keep up.

    Round 6: Jofre 10-9 (58-57)

    Harada not throwing as much here, Jofre capitalising. Jofre working a steady jab, with nice counters, mixing in a few corkscrew crosses here and there whilst having success with a short left hook. Harada gradually built up his momentum but didn't do it quick enough to take the round back imo. He started flitting back in with his own jab, landing some nice little flurries. Clear difference in speed here. Jofre, whilst still an unbelievable fighter and still in his prime, was clearly not as sharp in this one as he was in the first, and definitely as the Medel fights.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020 at 9:27 AM
  5. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 7: Harada 10-9 (68-66 Harada)

    Another fun round, Harada up and running yet again, straight in with his jab, boating down, landing left hooks and straight crosses. Éder not feeling a tear up(why would he?) and backs up to the sanctity of the ropes. Here he does some nice up and down bobbing with a wonderful series of sharp counters which caused a clinch from Harada, but was ultimately out-worked. Yet again. Close, Competitive but the same story again. Harada's volume takes it.


    Round 8: Jofre 10-9 (77-76)
    Lovely counters from Jofre. Nice stalking, good fighting off the ropes.

    PS: I wrote a large para on this but it's gone:(
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2020 at 2:25 PM
  6. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 9: Harada 10-9 (87-85 Harada)

    Harada coming out like it's the first still, throwing hard combinations, lots of feints from his lead along with a plethora of snappy, flickering or lead jabs. Jofre looking to block most of these, lie on the ropes and conserve energy whilst Harada looked to destroy. Jofre holding lots, Harada throwing lots. Easy decision, although neither landing much clean.
    Jofre seemingly spent at this point.
     
  7. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 10: Harada 10-9 (97-94)

    Dominant round from Harada, lots of work and showing his conditioning advantage. Lots of lovely flurries in-between holding and boring lulls. Jofre snapping out of whatever trance he was in and landing a HARD overhand which Harada ate and walked onto. He kept applying pressure and giving Jofre's back rope burn. Fun round, but another one in the bank for Harada.
     
  8. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 11: Harada 10-9 (107-103)

    Same **** different round, Harada pouring on shots over and over again. Jofre landing decent hard shots as you'd expect but spent more time holding on than punching. He's being very wise by fighting off the ropes, but it's not like he has any other options. He tried to spin Harada but failed rather miserably. This is getting fairly one-sided now.
     
  9. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Round 12: Harada 10-9 (117-112)
    Round 13: Harada 10-9 (127-121)
    Round 14: Harada 10-9 (137-130)
    Round 15: Harada 10-9 (147-139)
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2020 at 9:53 AM
  10. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    Masahiko Fighting Harada
    An unbelievably skilled swarmer, one of the greatest ever. His left hand is one of the all time best ever, constantly moving, lots of feints, left hooks and a superb jab. He blended these feints with his head-movement and so set up his mean right hand. He'd get full extension, full rotation and torque on his shots, and set up his beautiful left to the body from them.

    Strengths
    Workrate - Harada's punch output was insane, his left hand was almost always doing something and his right would snap down at any given moment. The pace he set was incredibly hard to deal with and almost impossible to win rounds against.
    Athleticsm - Man was so fast! He blazed out of his corner and his hands were all seemingly everywhere. Bodyshots, headshots, feints, jabs ect, he'd work them in to flurries in milliseconds, and that's just his hands. His feet were crazy quick too, very hard to pin down. Harada was also explosive, bursting into crazy accurate snapping shots.
    Technique - Perfect punch structure, Harada got perfect torque, balance and distance in his shots as much as possible. He gave limited counter opportunities too, despite his workrate, by making sure his hooks were as tight as possible and his straight punches were straight back to the chin or the hip extension left his chin covered.
    Footwork - Near perfect aggressive footwork. Lots of shifts and half steps to disturb rhythm and perfect angles to cut off the ring. Harada's foot-movement was so natural and fluid, it's amazing how he used it to get full hip rotation on his shots whilst keeping guys trapped and remaining completely balanced.
    Physicality - despite his size, he was a strong mutha****er. He easily forced Medel, Jofre, Pone and other world level fighters back to the ropes and bulled them around.

    Weaknesses
    Size - Harada was a very small guy, especially at BW. He learned to use it to his advantage, but a guy with T-Rex arms would always have issues with a long rangy guy who knows how to use it. Then again, how many people could use range better than Jofre?
    Balls - His own aggression and fighter attitude could get him tagged by hard bangers and was the direct cause of his loss to Medel(well aside from Medel's power).
    Style - hard to say if this is actually a weakness, but as a swarmer he would always have issues with a guy who held their feet and could back Harada up and/or steer him into shots or land cleanly. It might not be a weakness but charging at elite level fighters, full speed isn't the safe method.
    Offence - obviously this isn't the weakness, but when he didn't have it he was gone. You shut it down, or at least try to negate it, then you stand a much better chance of winning. Harada didn't like holding, if you smothered his work on the way in, you start laying a decent blueprint for beating him. Medel & Jofre showed he didn't like guys who could fight off the ropes.

    Serviceable Aspects
    Power - not a particularly big puncher, certainly not a Wilde or Olivares but respectable power with the volume he came at. Whether it be the accumulation of shots to break someone down, or just keep them honest; his power was serviceable.
    Chin - definitely not bad but being stopped and wobbled by Medel isn't a confidence boosting result. He did take some massive wacks from Jofre though, and was pretty much fine. He showed throughout his career that his chin was good, but also showed that his chin was crackable. Ergo: "Serviceable".
    Defence - very good at times, as he could slip shots in bunches then counter but he has "Canelo Syndrome"*, and so gets hit clean more than he had too. It's more a product of his style than having a bad defence.

    *Where he has to be actively thinking about his defence to turn it up.

    >Particular Fights
    Harada showed he could deal with a well schooled southpaw when he obliterated Aoki. He establish lead foot dominace and worked his lead over Aoki's with counters. Then he mixed his rights in and couldn't miss.

    For mine, losses are always a good place to start looking for analysis. Harada's were definitely eye-openers. The José Medel loss revealed, in my eyes at least, that a boxer-puncher with great finishing skills who could time Harada and hurt him would be able to finish him off, or this version at least. Harada improved this weakness, but not enough to stop me picking an ATG with these attributes over him (think Zarate, Olivares ect).

    The 2nd Pone fight showed me that Harada had issues working as cleanly against someone willing to stink out the joint and hold him upclose. He also had issues with Pone's jab and movement. The Rose fight tends to get written off, due to Harada's weight issues but it shows similar aspects to the Pone fight. Imo it shows that a slick mover with good infighting prowess and crafty defences.

    >Difference Between BW and Fly
    Harada at BW was a much more complete fighter, and in a vacuum I'd wager a better one, but there are distinct differences that effect how he is to be perceived at the two weights. At Fly he was much rawer and more inclined to stay on offence and his physical strength was much more noticeable, as was his power. His chin was also seemingly better, although it wasn't tested nearly as much. Masahiko was more devastating at Fly, but not as refined and easier to hit. Whereas at BW he is much more undersized than at fly and so wasn't as much of a physical presence. He did have a better understanding of how to dictate range and manage distance though and showed a more technically advanced lead at 118, as well as more versatility with his footwork. However he was much faster, more ferocious with a higher workrate, comparatively*. All of that is well and good, but the MAJOR difference was that he had learnt how to back off and recover when hurt instead of picking up the pace and trying to get a stoppage himself.

    *His workrate and speed was probably slower but the speed and volume of the average elite Fly is higher than the average elite BW. I think it's an advantage coz Harada was better than the best BWs in these areas, despite being worse in them than he was at Fly.

    @IntentionalButt, opinions?
    @roughdiamond @The Undefeated Lachbuster
     
  11. The Undefeated Lachbuster

    The Undefeated Lachbuster Podcast EVERY SUNDAY youtube.com/lordlegender Full Member

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  12. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    What would you class it as?
     
  13. The Undefeated Lachbuster

    The Undefeated Lachbuster Podcast EVERY SUNDAY youtube.com/lordlegender Full Member

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    7.5/10
     
  14. roughdiamond

    roughdiamond Ridin' the rails Full Member

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    Great breakdown. Just another thing to note is that Aoki was considered a massive puncher (was a so called 'Megaton' puncher lol). Him, Harada and Ebihara were called the 'Three Crows' of the Flyweight division. Although Aoki didn't get much of a chance, Harada handled his power very well.

    Have you watched Harada at 126lbs in the Famechon 1 bout? He is noticeably slower, but this actually makes it much easier to appreciate the finer points in his game. Watch, you'll notice his parry game was on point, for example! Man, he was robbed in that first one.

    And in my opinion, Harada had an ATG jab at Fly. Same level as Sot's IMO. But you are definitely right; he really refined at Bantam.
     
  15. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft The Cobra Will Always Bite Back... Full Member

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    I agree. I'd class that as "serviceable". Certainly not bad enough to be a weakness, but not good enough to be a defining strength.
     


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