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Lomachenko-Rigondeaux will be at 130lbs if fight gets made for Dec.9

By Chris Williams: Super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeux will need to climb 2 divisions to fight WBO super featherweight title holder Vasyl “Hi-Tech” Lomachenko (9-1, 7 KOs) at 130 if the fight is going to get made for December 9.

The fight still isn’t signed as of yet. If the fight goes get made, the two fighters will be facing each other at Madison Square Garden in New York.


A win for Rigondeaux over Lomachenko would be the second time in the Cuban star’s career that he’s beaten one of Top Rank’s biggest stars. 4 years ago in 2013, Rigondeaux totally embarrassed the popular Top Rank fighter Nonito Donaire in beating him by a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision. The loss for Donaire sent his career in a downward descent. Top Rank must be pretty confident in Lomachenko for them to want to risk another one of their biggest stars against the talented Rigondeaux.

With the fight taking place at 130, this means that Lomachenko won’t be meeting Rigondeaux halfway between his 122 lb. weight class and Lomachenko’s 130 lb. class. Rigondeaux will have to come all the way up to the super featherweight limit of 130 lbs. if he wants the fight with him.

If Lomachenko-Rigondeaux is finalized it will be at 130 pounds max for Vasyl Lomachenko’s title. #boxing,” said Dan Rafael on his Twitter.

Rigondeaux and Lomachenko are both 2-time Olympic gold medalists. Rigondeaux won his 2 Olympic gold medals for Cuba, and Lomachenko won his for Ukraine. There’s never been a world title fight between 2 Olympic gold medalists before. It’s disappointing that it’s take this long for Top Rank to make the fight between the fighters, as Rigondeaux has been interested in fighting Lomachenko for a long time now.

It’s great that the fight is finally getting made, but you have to wonder why they waited this long until Rigondeaux was 36 before they started showing interest. Were Top Rank and Lomachenko waiting Rigondeaux out until he got old before making the fight? It wouldn’t surprise this writer if that were the case. Look at Golden Boy Promotions with the way they waited 2 years before finally putting their flagship fighter Saul Canelo Alvarez in with middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. Waiting isn’t a big deal. What makes it a big deal is Golovkin is now 35-years-old. Many boxing fans thought Golovkin was in his prime 2 years ago when he was 33. Golden Boy wasn’t interested in making the Canelo-Golovkin fight at that time. It’s only now that Golovkin is coming off of shaky performances against Danny Jacobs and Kell Brook that Golden Boy has finally made the Canelo vs. Triple G fight.

Rigondeaux, 36, is still perfect as a pro at 17-0, 11 KOs). Lomachenko lost to Orlando Salido three years ago by a 12 round split decision in 2014. Lomachenko clearly lost the fight. The judge that scored it for Lomachenko seemed to ignore the hard body shots that Salido was punishing the Ukrainian with all night long.

With Rigondeaux having to come up 2 divisions to fight Rigondeaux without being met halfway between the weights, it’ll be difficult for Lomachenko to get full credit from the boxing fans if he beats Rigondeaux. Lomachenko is so much heavier than the Cuban fighter. If Lomachenko loses, then it’ll be really bad for his career.

“It would be a historic milestone in my professional career,” said Lomachenko’s promoter Bob Arum via espn.com. “It’s never been done before — each of them winning two gold medals and fighting each other. That’s something special. That will be remembered in history.”

I don’t know if the casual boxing fans will care too much about the fight involving two fighters with the Olympic credentials that Rigondeaux and Lomachenko possess. The fans just want to see good fights between highly skilled fighters.

If Lomachenko beats Rigondeaux, he will likely take the No.1 spot in the pound for pound rankings. Andre Ward is the No.1 fighter pound for pound right now, with Gennady Golovkin at No.2. Lomachenko would be a great pick to take the No.1 spot if he beats Rigondeaux and looks good.

This fight could go against Lomachenko, as he’s not as fast as Rigondeaux, and he does a lot of showboating that leaves him vulnerable. Unfortunately for Lomachenko, he tends to showboat when he has an opponent totally dominated and beleaguered mentally and physically.

Lomachenko’s taunting of his beaten opponents comes off making him look like a bully at times. It seems out of place. Taunting isn’t necessary in boxing, but it looks really bad when it’s used to embarrass someone that’s already being dominated. We saw Lomachenko taunting Miguel Marriaga in his last fight despite the fight being a total mismatch. Marriaga wasn’t competitive with him at all, and yet Lomachenko still chose taunt him. I don’t think it endeared him to the boxing fans that came to see it live, and for the fans that were watching at home.

Rigondeaux is sometimes viewed by boxing fans as having a dull fighting style due to him being so technical. Rigondeaux is very scientific with the way he approaches to beating his opponents. He’s often smaller and weaker than his opponents, and it’s not in him to mix it up and put his chin on the line. Never the less, Rigondeaux has looked a lot more aggressive lately in stopping 4 of his last 5 five fights. That’s impressive. Rigondeaux is showing that he can knock guys out when he wants to.

As we saw in the Salido fight, Lomachenko’s weakness is shots to the body, and that’s Rigondeaux’s specialty.

I guess you can’t blame Lomachenko for being so slow in making the Rigondeaux fight, because he’s a real threat to beating him due to his speed, body punching and defensive skills. Rigondeaux is an arguably better fighter than Lomachenko pound for pound.

Lomachenko had the better amateur record than Rigondeaux in finishing his career at 396-1 compared to Rigondeaux’s 463-12. But both guys won 2 Olympic gold medals, so it’s not as if Lomachenko accomplished more than Rigondeaux whn it came to winning gold medals in the Olympics.

“Bob Arum is having discussions with Roc Nation Sports and Dino Duva about the fight,” said Top Rank president Todd duBoef to espn.com.

The other fighter that Lomachenko and Top Rank were considering was former 2 division world champion Orlando Salido. That’s a fight that Lomachenko has wanted for 3 years so that he could avenge his loss to Salido in 2013. It’s unclear why Top Rank is going in the direction of Rigondeaux instead. Perhaps they feel that Salido won’t take the fight, as he reportedly turned down an offer of $750,000 to fight Lomachenko recently. Top Rank replaced him with Miguel Marriaga, who was coming off of a loss to Top Rank fighter Oscar Valdez in his previous fight. That didn’t stop Top Rank from using him again despite the loss in order to match him up against Lomachenko.




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