WBC, WBO, WBA lightweight champion Vasiliy Lomachenko is all set to take on current IBF lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez this weekend in Las Vegas.
It is one of the most anticipated fights of the year and fans will get to see an undisputed champion in Boxing’s lightweight division for the first time in nearly three decades. Heading into this fight, Vasiliy is the heavy betting favourite.
Lomachenko’s former arch-rival Guillermo Rigondeaux, who is also a two-time Olympic champion is backing the Ukrainian to secure the victory.
“It’s going to be a very good fight,'” Rigondeaux said to George Ebro. “But I think Lomachenko will win. Teofimo hasn’t fought as many good people as Lomachenko. Lomachenko has faced superior opponents.”
Rigondeaux’s reasoning for picking Lomachenko is the sheer amount of experienced fighters that he has fought over his career. In just 15-fights inside the ring, ‘Hi-Tech’ has become a three-division world champion and has beaten the likes of Rigondeaux, Jorge Linares, Jose Pedraza, Luke Campbell etc.
While Vasiliy has beaten Rigondeux in their much-anticipated showdown in 2017, the Cuban stated that he doesn’t count himself in the top-rated opponent the Ukrainian has beaten since he is a 118 pounder.
“I don’t land on that Lomachenko list [of top fighters he’s beaten], because I’m actually an 118-pounder and he was a 130-pounder,” Rigondeaux added.
“Teofimo must prepare thoroughly, I know he is a good boxer, because he has done sparring with me, when he was 126-pounds,” explained Rigondeaux. “He’s a good boy and I hope he does a good job. It’s going to be a big fight, but I think Lomachenko wins.”
Teofimo Lopez has to catch Lomachenko early to win
Former champion Jose Pedraza who has also shared a ring with Vasiliy has a word of advice for Lopez. According to Puerto Rican star, Lopez has to catch Vasiliy early to win the fight.
“Teofimo has a lot of opportunities [to win] because he is a talented young man with a good punch. He’s explosive, but I understand that if he can’t do something in the first five rounds, I don’t think he can from the sixth [onwards],” said Pedraza to Carlos Gonzalez.
“Lomachenko is progressive, from the sixth round he applies pressure and throws more punches. He is a precise and selective fighter. Teofimo has to take advantage of those first five rounds to come out on top.” (H/T – Boxingscene.com)
Who do you guys think wins in a fight between Vasiliy and Lopez?