|Intro||Ukrainian professional boxer|
|A.K.A.||Vasyl Anatoliyovich Lomachenko, The Matrix, Hi-Tech, NoMasChenko|
|Birth||17 February 1988, Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Odessa Oblast, Ukraine|
Vasyl Anatoliyovych Lomachenko (Ukrainian: Василь Анатолійович Ломаченко, IPA: [βɐˈsɪlʲ lomɐˈtʃɛnko]; also Vasily or Vasiliy; born 17 February 1988) is a Ukrainian professional boxer. He is currently a unified lightweight world champion, having held the WBA (Super), WBO and Ring magazine titles since 2018, and previously the WBO featherweight and junior lightweight titles between 2014 and 2018.
Lomachenko holds several all-time records for winning major world championships in the fewest professional fights: he won a world title in his third fight (tied with Saensak Muangsurin), became a two-weight champion in his seventh fight, and a three-weight champion in his twelfth fight.
He is known for his exceptional hand speed, timing, accuracy, creativity, athleticism, and footwork. Lomachenko is also one of the most successful amateur boxers of all time, possessing a record of 396 wins and 1 loss, with his only loss avenged twice. Competing in the featherweight and lightweight divisions, he won a silver medal at the 2007 World Championships, gold at the 2008 European Championships, consecutive gold at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics, and consecutive gold at the 2009 and 2011 World Championships.
As of September 2018, Lomachenko is ranked as the world's best active boxer, pound for pound, by ESPN, the Boxing Writers Association of America, the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and The Ring; and third by BoxRec. He is also ranked by all of them as the world's best active super featherweight. The Ring named Lomachenko as their Prospect of the Year in 2013; CBS Sports named him Boxer of the Year in 2016; HBO Sports named him Boxer of the Year in 2016 and in 2017; the Boxing Writers Association of America and The Ring named him Fighter of the Year in 2017.
Lomachenko was coached by his father Anatoly from a young age. He claims that if his father had not been a boxing coach he probably would have chosen to play ice hockey professionally. According to Bob Arum in 2017, Lomachenko's father did not let him train for boxing until he attended traditional Ukrainian dance classes. He then went on to gymnastics before finally getting into the ring.
At the 2007 World Championships in Chicago, he won silver by beating Abner Cotto in the first round, Theodoros Papazov, Mikhail Bernadski, Arturo Santos Reyes, and Li Yang in the semifinal to reach fellow southpaw and Russian favorite Albert Selimov, to whom he lost 11–16.
Lomachenko won gold at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and avenged his 2007 World Championship defeat to rival and reigning world champion, Selimov, in the first round. He beat his five opponents by an astonishing 45 point margin, outscoring them 58–13, en route to his first gold medal at the senior level. He was subsequently named the outstanding boxer of the tournament and awarded the Val Barker Trophy. His dominant run was described by one historian as "probably the most impressive streak in Olympic boxing ever." Additionally, he won gold again that year to also become continental champion at the European Championships in Liverpool, conceding just 4 points against his four opponents.
He won gold at the 2009 World Championships in Milan. Despite breaking his hand in the tournament, he beat his five opponents by a remarkable 56 point margin, outscoring them 63–7. He then competed as a lightweight at the 2011 World Championships in Baku after AIBA removed the featherweight division. There, he won his second consecutive gold medal to become a two-weight world champion.
Following a forced move up to lightweight, he won his second consecutive Olympic gold medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London to become a rare two-weight Olympic champion. He defeated Han Soon-Chul of South Korea in the final, 19–9, and was a strong candidate to win the Val Barker Trophy for a second time in what would have historically been an unprecedented feat. Ultimately, he was edged by welterweight gold medal winner, Serik Sapiyev, of Kazakhstan.
He finished his extensive amateur career with an impressive record of 396 wins and only one loss, to Albert Selimov, which was avenged twice. In November 2017, boxing website The Sweet Science conducted a readers' poll, which ran for several weeks, to determine the amateur boxer regarded by the public majority as the all-time best. Alongside Lomachenko, the five other standout finalists selected were: Laszlo Papp, Teofilo Stevenson, Felix Savon, Mark Breland, and Guillermo Rigondeaux. While none were able to claim the majority vote, Lomachenko won a plurality, having led the poll with nearly one-third of the total votes cast.
World Series of Boxing
Prior to turning professional, Lomachenko competed in the lightweight division of the World Series of Boxing (WSB) from January to May 2013. Despite having six fights in this tournament, some outlets would later claim that those fights should have counted towards Lomachenko's professional record prior to his official debut later that year, due to WSB being professional boxing by law, with headgear and rounds being scored using the ten-point must system according to the regulations set by professional boxing commissions that license the boxers, promoters, and officials.
After winning his second Olympic gold medal, Lomachenko made the decision to turn professional. After meeting with several fight promoters, he signed a contract to fight for Top Rank. Lomachenko made his professional debut in United States on 12 October 2013 as part of the undercard to Timothy Bradley vs. Juan Manuel Márquez, defeating Mexican fighter José Ramirez with a fourth-round knockout.
Lomachenko vs. Salido
Lomachenko attempted to make history by winning a world championship in his second fight and breaking Saensak Muangsurin's record, who won a junior welterweight world title in his third pro fight in 1975. He challenged veteran boxer Orlando Salido for World Boxing Organization's featherweight title. The title became vacant after Salido failed to make weight, weighed in 128¼ pounds, over the 126 pound limit. On fight night, he rehydrated to 147 pounds, which was equivalent to the welterweight limit. The fight took place at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas on March 1, 2014.
Lomachenko seemed to shy away from engaging Salido throughout most of the fight, something that his opponent exploited. A late surge, which saw him injure Salido in the final round, was unable to change the final result, losing a controversial split decision despite landing 164 punches out of 441 vs 142 punches out of 645 for Salido. Two judges had it for Salido 116–112 and 115–113, while the third had it for Lomachenko 115–113. ESPN.com had it 114–114. Lomachenko, for his part, stated he felt the decision was "fair" and accepted blame for not following through with his corner's game plan, promising to learn from the experience and come back stronger. The referee of the fight, Laurence Cole, was roundly criticized by many boxing media outlets for his perceived failure to properly conduct the match. They mentioned that the referee allowed Salido to deliver an inordinate number of low blows. Salido was also criticized for failing to make weight and some sources stipulated that he did so intentionally, as well as coming back much heavier than Lomachenko on the fight night.
Lomachenko vs. Russell, Jr.
The WBO title remained vacant due to Salido not making weight. On March 20, 2014 the WBO contacted Golden Boy and Top Rank to make them aware that they had 30 days to negotiate a fight between Lomachenko and Gary Russell Jr. (24-0, 14 KO) for the vacant WBO featherweight title. In an interview, WBO President Paco Valcarcel said that the fight should take place no later than July 2014. The fight took place on June 22 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. Lomachenko defeated Gary Russell Jr. via twelve-round majority decision to win the vacant WBO featherweight title. Judge Lisa Giampa scored the fight a 114–114 draw, but judges Max DeLuca and Pat Russell scored the fight 116–112 in favour of Lomachenko. Lomachenko used his power and swift skills to maintain control of the fight until the final bell. Lomachenko began to hurt Russel Jr. more in the later rounds with power shots. Russell Jr. landed only 10% of his punches thrown, with a lot of combinations being missed or blocked. With this victory, Lomachenko joined Saensak Muangsurin as the only other boxer to have won a world title in the quickest amount of time since turning professional, accomplishing the feat in just his third professional bout.
Lomachenko vs. Piriyapinyo
Lomachenko made his first title defense against mandatory challenger Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (52-1, 33 KOs) of Thailand. This fight took place on the undercard of the Pacquiao vs. Algieri on HBO PPV bout on November 22, 2014 at the Cotai Arena, Venetian Resort in Macao. Although Piritapinyo's record of 52 wins and 1 loss made the fight sound challenging for Lomachenko, the only time he stepped up in his 11-year career was in 2012 against Chris John, which he lost via unanimous decision. Lomachenko handled his opponent easily, hurting him a few times and scoring a knockdown at the end of the fourth round. In the seventh round, Lomachenko stopped using his left hand; it was later confirmed that he injured that hand. Lomachenko won a unanimous decision with the scores of 120–107 on all three of the judges' scorecards.
Lomachenko vs. Rodriguez
It was announced prior to Lomachenko's mandatory fight against Piriyapinyo that the winner would next fight 28 year old Puerto Rican boxer Gamalier Rodriguez (25-2-3, 17 KOs). Rodriguez earned the title shot after knocking out Martin Cardona. The fight was announced to take place on May 2, 2015 on the under-card of Mayweather-Pacquiao at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Prior to the fight, Rodriguez was on a 17-fight winning streak dating back to 2010, where the fight resulted in a first round technical draw. Top Rank announced before the fight that Lomachenko had signed a five-year contract extension. On fight night, Lomachenko retained his WBO title against Rodriguez via a ninth-round KO victory. Lomachenko's speed and precision was too much for Rodriguez, who took a knee twice in the fight, once in the seventh and again in the ninth, which ended the bout. He was also docked a point by referee in fifth round for a low blow. Lomachenko landed 227 of 586 punches thrown (39%) compared to Rodriguez who landed only 55 of 285 (19%). After the fight, Lomachenko spoke through a translator about his performance, "I was just boxing for the fans, having a good time out there." Top Rank were hoping to match Lomachenko with then-WBA featherweight champion Nicholas Walters in a unification fight.
Lomachenko vs. Koasicha
Lomachenko next fought on the Tim Bradley vs. Brandon Rios undercard on HBO against #7 WBO ranked 24 year old Romulo Koasicha (25-4, 15 KOs). The fight took place on November 7, 2015 at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Paradise, Nevada. He overwhelmed, dominated and stopped Koasicha in the tenth round on a body shot. In the post fight interview, Lomachenko told of how he wanted to put on a good show, "I was just having fun in there, "If I really wanted to knock him out, I would have done it earlier. I was having a good time, but I knew the end would be on a body shot. I just didn't know which one." Lomachenko earned a career high $750,000 for the fight and out landed Koasicha by 259 punches. Compubox stats showed that Lomachenko dominated throughout, landing 334 of his 717 punches thrown (47%). Koasicha only managed to land 75 of 607 (12%) and earned $35,000 for the loss. The loss ended Koasicha's run of 4 straight wins and he suffered his first stoppage defeat.
Lomachenko vs. Martinez
Following a third successful defense, Lomachenko, still the reigning WBO featherweight champion decided to move up weight to super featherweight to challenge Román 'Rocky' Martínez (29-2-3, 17 KOs) for his WBO super featherweight title on June 11, 2016 at the Madison Square Garden Theater. Martinez was coming off a draw against Orlando Salido in September 2015, after he controversially defeated him in their first fight in April 2015 for the WBO title. Lomachenko became the fastest boxer to win a world title in two weight divisions knocking out Martinez in the 5th round of the world title fight. Lomachenko dominated the fight from the start with superior footwork, hand speed and slick punching from different angles. According to CompuBox research, Lomachenko out-landed Martinez 87 to 34. After the fight, Lomachenko called out Orlando Salido, "Hey Salido, I'm ready to fight you at any time, before the Vargas fight, I told him to win the fight but I never told him I wasn't going to fight him if he didn't, so let's do it. I want to revenge Salido for my fans and give them a win over him."
Lomachenko vs. Walters
After failing to make the fight happen earlier in the year, Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti confirmed on September 28 that Lomachenko would defend his WBO title against 30 year old unbeaten Jamaican boxer Nicholas Walters (26-0-1, 21 KOs) at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas on November 26 on HBO. In previous negotiations, Walters turned down a career-high $550,000 purse, even after Lomachenko offered him a further $300,000 from his own purse if Walters won. HBO provided the remainder of Walter's purse for the fight to go ahead. The event marked Bob Arum's 2,000th promoted card, as well as celebrating his 50th anniversary as a promoter.
After Lomachenko dominated the first six rounds with his movement, he threw more combination punches in the sixth which left Walters visibly shaken. Lomachenko won the fight after Walters retired on his stool at the end of the seventh round. Upon returning to his corner, Walters got up and walked to referee Tony Weeks, where he reiterated twice he did not want to continue. A lot of boos followed the confirmation of the fight result as Walters seemed to back himself up for not returning for round 7, blaming his inactivity in the ring, "Listen to me, if I get the chance to fight two or three fights leading up to this fight, I'll definitely take him on in different circumstances where we are more active and definitely beat him but it was all him tonight... he fought me with three fights this year. So it was all him tonight... Nothing take away from him, he's a very good fighter, I learned a lot from fighting him and it was seven rounds of beautiful boxing until my corner decided to end it."
Compubox stats showed Lomachenko landed 114 of 437 punches thrown (26 percent) while Walters landed 49 of 264 (19 percent). Lomachenko earned his first $1 million purse. Following the post fight, Arum told ESPN, he would like to make a rematch with Salido next, followed by a lightweight title fight against Terry Flanagan and then a super fight with Manny Pacquiao. The fight drew 761,000 viewers on HBO.
Lomachenko vs. Sosa
On February 2, 2017, Bob Arum spoke to ESPN. After failing to make a match up with WBA 'Super' champion Jezreel Corrales, he announced Lomachenko's next fight would take place on April 8 at the MGM National Harbor in Washington, D.C., in a featherweight unification against WBA 'Regular' champion Jason Sosa (20-1-4, 15 KOs). This would have been Sosa's third defence of his secondary title, but on February 16, he vacated the title. Lomachenko weighed 129.6 pounds. Sosa weighed in at 130.4 pounds, he then stripped down naked and still over weighed at 130.2 and was given the time to trim the extra weight. He later returned to the Maryland commission’s scale and successfully made weight exactly 130 pounds allowing himself to challenge for the WBO title. The fight headlined HBO World Championship Boxing. In front of a sell-out crowd of 2,828, mostly Ukrainian, Lomachenko successfully retained his WBO title for a second time after Sosa failed to return for round 10 when his trainer pulled him out. The bout was similar to Lomachenko's previous fight with Walters, who also pulled out. Lomachenko's flashy style and fast combinations won him the rounds. Sosa appeared more hurt in round 8 when he was hit hard on the body.
Sosa was the most successful opponent Lomachenko had fought since Salido in terms of landing punches. He landed 68 of his 286 thrown (24%). Lomachenko landed 275 of 696 punches (40%). Sosa's trainer, Raul Rivas explained why he pulled him out of the fight, "It was an accumulation of too many punches. I didn't want to get Jason hurt. He was out of the fight." Lomachenko said he wanted to follow this victory by only fighting current world champions at super featherweight for a chance to unify the division or he would move up lightweight. The fight peaked at 886,000 viewers HBO and averaged 832,000 viewers. These numbers showed an increase in viewership for Lomachenko from his last fight on HBO against Walters.
Lomachenko vs. Marriaga
On June 30, 2017 Top Rank announced that a deal was in place for Lomachenko to make a third defense of his WBO title against Colombian former featherweight world title challenger Miguel Marriaga (25-2, 21 KOs), who was coming off a loss and moving up to super featherweight. It was confirmed that the fight would take place live on ESPN on August 5, 2017 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. Carl Moretti of Top Rank stated that Salido had initially turned down a $720,000 purse to fight Lomachenko in a rematch. Even after negotiations to meet his financial needs, Salido still denied the offer due to other problems, mentioning weight and hand issues.
In front of 4,102 people, Lomachenko dominated the fight from the opening bell and proved too much for Marriaga, dropping him twice in the fight, before Marriaga's corner stopped the fight after round 7. Lomachenko retained his WBO title for the third time. The first knockdown came towards the end of the third round when Lomachenko landed a straight left to Marriaga, who was off balance. Marriaga got up straight away and didn't appear hurt. In the fourth round, an accidental clash of heads opened up a cut above Lomachenko's left eye. In the following round, Lomachenko protested to referee Jack Reiss, claiming he was being hit low and headbutted. In the seventh round, Lomachenko landed body shots and uppercuts, eventually dropping Marriaga for the second time with a left hook at 2 minutes and 59 seconds of round 7. Marriaga beat the count and walked towards his corner. The referee waved an end to the fight moments later. Although it was a corner retirement, the CSAC ruled it a KO win. Lomachenko earned a $750,000 purse for the fight, compared to the $50,000 received by Marriaga.
During the post fight interviews, Marriaga praised Lomachenko, "He dominated the fight. I connected with some good punches, but I couldn't get the result I was looking for. I wanted to continue the fight, but my corner stopped the fight. He basically overwhelmed me with pressure." Bob Arum also showed his admiration of Lomachenko, comparing him to former heavyweight world champion and legend Muhammad Ali, who had 27 of his professional fight promoted by Arum. He said "I never saw anything like this. He's unbelievable. Not only does he have the knowledge, he has the skill set that I've never seen before. Fast, reflexes, everything and he really entertains. Who else did that? Muhammad Ali." The fight averaged 728,000 viewers on ESPN. The move from HBO to ESPN was done to expose Lomachenko and gain more viewership, but was down by 104,000 compared to Lomachenko's last fight against Sosa on HBO. Viewership was adversely affected by a channel switch when the broadcast began and the time at which their main event started.
Lomachenko vs. Rigondeaux
On August 6, Arum stated that Lomachenko would fight for a third time in 2017, likely on December 9 or 23. When asked who the potential options were, Arum stated, "Well, there's a few guys. (Guillermo) Rigondeaux if he answers Dino (Duva's) call. There's (Orlando) Salido, who's sniffing around and the third is (Miguel) Berchelt." Arum also mentioned lightweight contender Ray Beltrán, but said he would like to capture a world title at lightweight before a potential fight with Lomachenko. Salido informed his manager Sean Gibbons, that he had no issues with fighting Lomachenko in December. Gibbons believed Lomachenko needed Salido more than Salido would need Lomanchenko, as Lomachenko was looking to raise TV ratings and sell out a 10,000 capacity arena. On August 14, Arum spoke to LA Times and confirmed either Rigondeaux or Salido would be Lomachenko's next opponent. He stated if the bout with Rigondeaux was made, it would likely take place at the Madison Square Garden Theatre and a potential rematch with Salido would take place in Los Angeles. On August 21, Arum stated both camps were closing in on finalising a deal for December 9. A fight between Lomachenko and Rigondeaux would take place at 130 pounds. The fight was officially confirmed on September 15. It was since confirmed that the fight would in fact be at the Theater, headlining an ESPN televised card. On November 18, Carl Moretti of Top Rank revealed a re-hydration clause on the contract. Both fighters agreed to weigh in at 09:00 on the morning of the fight, where they would not be able to exceed 138 pounds. Any fighter over the limit would face a penalty of more than $10,000. On fight night, Lomachenko weighed 137.4 pounds and Rigondeaux weighed 130 pounds.
In front of a sell-out crowd of 5,102 at the Theater, Lomachenko retained his WBO title, dominating the fight with superior boxing skills, forcing Rigondeaux to retire on his stool after round 6. Rigondeaux stated he had broken the top of his left hand in round two, which was the reason he did not come out for round 7. Rigondeax became Lomachenko's fourth consecutive opponent to retire on his stool. The loss also marked the first time Rigondeaux had lost since 2003, when he was still an amateur. At the time of stoppage, Lomachenko was ahead on all three judges' scorecards, 60–53, 59–54, and 59–54.
In the post-fight interviews, Lomachenko was asked about Rigondeaux being his fourth consecutive opponent to retire on his stool, to which Lomachenko joked, "Maybe I should change my second name, now my name is 'No Mas Chenko'." He also went on to say, "This is not his weight, so it's not a big win for me. But he's a good fighter. He's got great skills. I adjusted to his style, low blows and all." Speaking to an interpreter, Rigondeaux said, "I lost, no excuses. I injured the top of my left hand in the second round. He's a very technical fighter. He's explosive. I'm gonna come back because that's what I do. The weight was not a factor in this fight. It was the injury to my hand." According to CompuBox statistics, Lomachenko landed 55 of 339 punches thrown (16%) and Rigondeax landed 15 of his 178 thrown (8%), landing no more than 3 punches per round. For the fight, Lomachenko was guaranteed a purse of $1.2 million whereas Rigondeaux earned a $400,000 purse. On December 12, Dino Duva of Roc Nation Sport, confirmed that Rigondeaux had bruised his hand and not fractured it, as initially stated. The card averaged 1.73 million viewers on ESPN, which did not include ESPN Deportes or the online streaming service.
The Los Angeles Times' Lance Pugmire was told by Bob Arum on January 26, 2018 that Lomachenko would have his next fight at lightweight. Arum stated he was unable to make unification fights at super featherweight against WBC champion Miguel Berchelt and WBA titleholder Alberto Machado which was the main reason for the move up.
Lomachenko vs. Linares
On January 30, Arum told ESPN that negotiations had begun in December 2017 for a fight between Lomachenko and WBA, The Ring Magazine lightweight champion Jorge Linares (44-3, 27 KOs) after speaking to Teiken Promotions, Linares' lead promoter, with the fight to take place on either April 28 or May 12, 2018. The fight would main event an ESPN card. Arum was pushing for the fight to take place at Madison Square Garden on May 12, 2018. The reason behind the date was explained by Arum, "May 12th is an extraordinarily important date for ESPN programming. It's right in the middle of the basketball playoffs." Carl Moretti called Eric Gomez of Golden Boy informing them of the date. Gomez stated they were happy with the fight, however the date of May 12 was not a good date for them, as they already had plans for that date. HBO would likely air the pay-per-view replay of Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Álvarez rematch, along with a live bout. On February 17, Gomez stated the fight was not called off and Arum would need to be more flexible with the date as Golden Boy accepted Arum's terms that the fight would take place in New York. On March 13, Los Angeles Times confirmed that terms had been agreed between both sides. The agreement was reached after ESPN agreed to televise the fight at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT, so it would broadcast before HBO's telecast on the same day. Madison Square Garden in New York City was confirmed as the venue. On March 21, the fight was officially announced. WBO president Francisco Valcarcel told Lomachenko, regardless of result, he would have 10 days to decide on whether he would return to super featherweight and defend his WBO or vacate. Both boxers weighed in 134.6 pounds.
In front of 10,429 in attendance, Lomachenko survived a knockdown in round 6 to win via TKO in round 10 after a perfectly placed liver shot to claim the WBA (Super) and The Ring lightweight titles. In doing so he became the fastest fighter ever to win titles in 3 different weight classes (only 12 professional fights) shattering the previous record of 20 fights, which was held by Jeff Fenech. Lomachenko wore Linares down with his fast shots through the first 9 rounds, before finishing the fight in round 10. Linares slowly beat the count but looked too hurt to continue. Referee Ricky Gonzalez stopped the fight at 2 minutes, 8 seconds of round 10. The loss snapped Linares' 13-fight win streak. At the time of stoppage, two judges had each fighter ahead 86–84 on their respective scorecards and the third judge Julie Lederman had it 85–85 even. After the fight, Lomachenko said, "It was a great fight. That right hand [that knocked me down], it was a great punch. It happens. I prepared for the last few rounds, and my father [and trainer Anatoly Lomachenko] told me, 'You need to go to the body.' Linares is a great champion, and the fight was good for the fans and everybody." Speaking of the knockout punch, Linares said it was 'perfectly landed.' De La Hoya also congratulated Arum on the fight and told Arum it was good experience working together. According to CompuBox Stats, Linares landed 207 of 739 punches thrown (28%), this included 139 power punches landed and a total amount of 77 body shots landed. Lomachenko landed 213 of 627 punches thrown (34%), with 112 jabs. For the fight, Linares was paid a career high $1 million, with Lomachenko receiving a $1.2 million purse. The card averaged 1,024,00 viewers. The fight itself averaged 1,439,000 viewers and peaked at 1,749,000 viewers, making it the most-watched boxing fight on cable television in 2018. On May 23, Lomachenko officially vacated his WBO super featherweight title.
Lomachenko vs. Pedraza
After winning the WBA 'Super' and The Ring lightweight titles, promoter Arum stated that Lomachenko would defend the belts on August 25, 2018 at The Forum in Inglewood, California. A possible unification with WBO titleholder Raymundo Beltran (35-7-1, 21 KOs) was a likely possibility. After vacating his WBO title, Arum stated Lomachenko would not fight on August 25. It was later revealed that earlier in the bout against Linares, Lomachenko suffered a torn labrum in his right shoulder. He underwent surgery on May 30 at the Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles. According to Lomachenko, the shoulder popped out and then back in in the second round. A new return date of December 2018 was targeted. On July 10, Lomachenko revealed he would return on August 25. However on July 31, his manager Egis Klimas told The Boxing Beat on ESPN+, Lomachenko would make his ring return on December 1. In the interview, he also stated it likely be a unification fight against the winner of the Raymundo Beltran vs. José Pedraza bout, which was scheduled to be contested on August 25. Pedraza (25-2, 12 KOs) defeated Beltran via unanimous decision, winning the WBO title and setting up a fight with Lomachenko. In September, The Ring Magazine announced the unification fight between Lomachenko and Pedraza would take place on December 8, 2018 at the Hulu Theatre in New York City.
For the first time as a professional, Lomachenko unified in a weight division as he beat Pedraza via unanimous decision to retain his WBA 'super' title and claim Pedraza's WBO lightweight title, before a sellout crowd 5,312. Lomachenko coasted to victory with the three judges scoring the bout 119–107, 117–109, and 117–109 in his favour. The first half of the fight was a rather tentative and tactical affair with neither fighter making a statement, however it was Lomachenko who was landeing the more cleaner and points scoring shots. By mid-fight Lomachenko looked to have a solid lead on the cards, but the fight seemed closer in the ring. It was during the championship rounds where the fight came alive. Round 10 was arguably Pedraza's best as he landed a hard right hand to Lomachenko's body. He followed up with a few more shots to the body. Round 11, which was the round of the fight saw Lomachenko come out quick and land a total of 42 power shots, his busiest round of the fight. In the middle of the round, Lomachenko shook Pedraza following a left hand, which eventually followed with a right hand to the body, dropping Pedraza. Although he beat the count, Pedraza was dropped a second time with over 10 seconds to go following a left to the body. Again, Pedraza beat the count and survived the round. Pedraza used the final round to stay out of reach and take Lomachenko the 12 round distance. The fight ended Lomachenko's 8-fight stoppage streak, in which he saw four consecutive opponents retire on their stool in between rounds. According to CompuBox stats, Lomachenko landed 240 of 738 punches thrown (33%), and Pedraza landed a very low 111 of his 931 punches thrown (12%). 506 of Pedraza's shots thrown where jabs in which only 31 landed. Lomachenko landed 158 power punches throughout the fight.
In the post-fight interview, Lomachenko credited Pedraza as being a tough and tricky fighter, which is why he couldn’t score the stoppage victory. He added, "It was my dream to unify titles. It was my next goal. I can now focus on my next chapter." Pedraza was happy with his performance and that he went "12 rounds with the best fighter in the world." He thought the fight was close up until round 11. Arum stated Lomachenko only wanted challenges going forward and would likely next fight in May 2019. The fight averaged 2,013,000 viewers, making it the second most-watched boxing match on American cable or network television in 2018. The fight peaked over 2.1 million viewers and the entire ESPN telecast averaged 1,865,000 viewers. Lomachenko was guaranteed a purse of $1 million, rising to $2 million and Pedraza was guaranteed $350,000, potentially earning closer to $1 million.
Lomachenko vs. Crolla
Within a week of Lomachenko successfully unifying at lightweight, Top Rank president Todd duBoef announced Lomachenko would return to the ring on April 12, 2019 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles headlining Friday night Top Rank Boxing on ESPN. With Richard Commey and Isa Chaniev set to fight for the vacant IBF lightweight title, it was highly likely that the winner would fight Lomachenko in what would be Lomachenko's second unification fight. Top Rank intended to finalize the deal with promoter Lou DiBella, which would see Commey vs. Chaniev take place on February 2, 2019 at the Ford Center in Frisco, Texas.
Lomachenko is married to Elena, and they have a son, Anatoly.
Professional boxing record
|Professional record summary|
|13 fights||12 wins||1 loss|
|14||N/A||N/A||Anthony Crolla||N/A||– (12)||12 Apr 2019||Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, US||Defending WBA (Super), WBO, and The Ring lightweight titles|
|13||Win||12–1||José Pedraza||UD||12||8 Dec 2018||Hulu Theater, New York City, New York, US||Retained WBA (Super) and The Ring lightweight titles;|
Won WBO lightweight title
|12||Win||11–1||Jorge Linares||TKO||10 (12), 2:08||12 May 2018||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Won WBA (Super) and The Ring lightweight titles|
|11||Win||10–1||Guillermo Rigondeaux||RTD||6 (12), 3:00||9 Dec 2017||The Theater at Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Retained WBO junior lightweight title|
|10||Win||9–1||Miguel Marriaga||RTD||7 (12), 3:00||5 Aug 2017||Microsoft Theater, Los Angeles, California, US||Retained WBO junior lightweight title|
|9||Win||8–1||Jason Sosa||RTD||9 (12), 3:00||8 Apr 2017||MGM National Harbor, Oxon Hill, Maryland, US||Retained WBO junior lightweight title|
|8||Win||7–1||Nicholas Walters||RTD||7 (12), 3:00||26 Nov 2016||Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, Paradise, Nevada, US||Retained WBO junior lightweight title|
|7||Win||6–1||Román Martínez||KO||5 (12), 1:09||11 Jun 2016||The Theater at Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, US||Won WBO junior lightweight title|
|6||Win||5–1||Romulo Koasicha||KO||10 (12), 2:35||7 Nov 2015||Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, US||Retained WBO featherweight title|
|5||Win||4–1||Gamalier Rodríguez||KO||9 (12), 0:50||2 May 2015||MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, US||Retained WBO featherweight title|
|4||Win||3–1||Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo||UD||12||22 Nov 2014||Cotai Arena, Macau, SAR||Retained WBO featherweight title|
|3||Win||2–1||Gary Russell Jr.||MD||12||21 Jun 2014||StubHub Center, Carson, California, US||Won vacant WBO featherweight title|
|2||Loss||1–1||Orlando Salido||SD||12||1 Mar 2014||Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas, US||For vacant WBO featherweight title|
|1||Win||1–0||José Ramírez||TKO||4 (10), 2:55||12 Oct 2013||Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, US||Won WBO International featherweight title|