The two will face off on Saturday night in Omaha for the WBO Welterweight title now held by Crawford.
Crawford, the world's pound-for-pound number two, was pushed back by Benavidez after moving in too close for comfort and instantly responded with a looping punch that barely missed its target.
The fight would not last much longer, though.
Crawford now holds a flawless 33-0 record with 24 KOs heading into Saturday's fight, where he'll defend his WBO welterweight title.
"He hasn't faced anyone who has a good resume or has a bad-ass resume", Benavidez said.
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When asked about Manning's form, Mara meanwhile said the Giants bore a shared responsibility for their dismal start to the season. Another round of National Football League owners meetings has begun with the Giants' John Mara criticizing Odell Beckham Jr .
For Benavidez who was also a highly promising Amateur boxer, this is his chance to become a world champion and to shock the world by beating the pound for pound best boxer in his hometown.
"Oh man, it was coming", Crawford said of his finishing flurry.
The American took his record to 34-0 on Saturday as he knocked out a tiring Benavidez in the 12th round.
"Next year he's not going to go soft on me and fight twice", Arum said as Crawford left his promoter to discuss his plans. "I saw him in his corner taking deep breaths and knew he was done". "It was just a matter of time".
On the undercard, 2016 Olympian Mikaela Mayer of Los Angeles won a regional super featherweight belt with a unanimous decision over Vanessa Bradford of Edmonton, Alberta.