Former unified lightweight world champion Vasiliy Lomachenko (16-2, 11 KOs) is all set to return to the squrared circle this October 10th, as he takes on Jamaine Ortiz (16-0-1, 8 KOs) in the main event of an ESPN+ show heading to New York.
Fresh off military service, Vasiliy Lomachenko will return to the ring after 10 months
According to BoxingScene.com, Lomachenko and Ortiz are now confirmed to fight at Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater on October 29. The lightweight fight will be the main event of a card that ESPN+ will stream from the arena downstairs, which is also the home venue for the New York Knicks and New York Rangers.
The report about the fight date was first made by Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports. The bout was originally scheduled to take place on 22nd October, but due to the postponement of the Artur Beterbiev vs. Anthony Yarde fight from 29th October to next year, the Lomachenko-Ortiz card was pushed back to 29th.
One of the top pound for pound boxers in the world right and the former unified lightweight, WBO featherweight and WBO junior lightweight champion, Lomachenko was last seen in action against Richard Commey at the MSG in December last year, marking a unanimous decision victory.
Earlier this year, emerged as the favourite to take on George Kambosos Jr in the latter’s first title defense as the reigning WBA (Super), IBF, WBC “franchise” and WBO titleholder, with a targeted fight date in June.
However in late February, in the wake of Russia’s invasion into Ukraine and the ongoing war that followed, Lomachenko flew to his homeland and joined the Belgorod-Dnestrovsky Territorial Defense Battalion in the resistance against Russia, joining his fellow Ukrainian boxing icons Oleksandr Usyk, Wladimir Klitschko and Vitali Klitschko, and Kambosos Jr went onto lose his unified titles to the now undisputed 135-pound champ Devin Haney on 5th June.
Hailing from Worcester, Massachusetts, the undefeated Jamaine Ortiz is coming off of a unanimous decision victory over former WBO junior lightweight champion Jamel Herring on 21st May in a 10-round clash in Las Vegas.
If Loma succeeds against Ortiz, he will be the first in line to face the winner of the upcoming rematch between Haney and Kambosos, i.e., earning a direct shot at the undisputed status at 135.