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Teofimo Lopez or Vasiliy Lomachenko: Who has more POP?

Teofimo Lopez Vasiliy Lomachenko

By Max Seitelman: The upcoming 135-pound unification between Teofimo Lopez and Vasiliy ‘Hi-Tech’ Lomachenko could be decided by which of the two have the most pop in their punches.

Although WBA/WBC/WBO lightweight champion Lomachenko (14-1, 10 KOs) isn’t known as a big puncher, he does have excellent, first-rate power when he sits down on his shots.

Lomachenko’s 66.67% KO rate shows that he can punch with good power, and he’s done that against superior opposition than the fighters the 22-year-old Teofimo (15-0, 12 KOs) has faced.

For his part, Teofimo has knocked out 80% of his opponents since turning pro in 2016; he’s got the speed, power, and the size to stop the aging Lomachenko. Boxing is a young man’s sport, and Teofimo may have too much youth for Lomachenko at this point.

Lopez says he walks around at a solid 155 pounds in between fights, and you can bet he’ll be weighing 160+ soon. Cutting 20 pounds of muscle to get down to 140 is going to be a hardship for Teofimo, so he WON’T be able to fight at light-welterweight for long after he moves up.

Boxing fans will need more proof from Teofimo that he’s the real thing because the 32-year-old Lomachenko is starting to shown signs of aging. He’s not the same fighter he was four to seven years ago.

Teofimo Lopez Vasiliy Lomachenko

Lomachenko is susceptible to counterpunches

“Yes, yes, yes,” said Shakur Stevenson to Fighthype when asked if he wants to fight Lomachenko after he faces Teofimo. “If he [Lomachenko] loses, no, I don’t want it. If he beats Teofimo, if he comes back down to 130, it would be a big fight, and we should make it happen.

“I’ve been in the ring with Lomachenko before,” said Stevenson. “We got history. He’s everything that people say. Lomachenko is a hell of a fighter. The thing that I took from him is he’s real competitive like me. I think we’re going to have an amazing showdown, and I’m always going to end up on top. For sure, I think he’s [Lomachenko] really susceptible to counter punches,” said Stevenson.

If Teofimo beats Lomachenko, then he would be the guy that Stevenson would need to go after. It would look odd in the eyes of the boxing world if Stevenson chose to fight Lomachenko AFTER a loss to Lopez, considering that would give the impression that he’s an opportunist.

Unfortunately for Shakur, he probably won’t get a fight against Teofimo because ‘El Brooklyn’ isn’t going to drop weight to get down to 130 so that they can fight. Teofimo is saying that he plans to move up to 140 after he defeats Lomachenko later this year, as he wants to fight for the titles in that division.

Stevenson will need to wait until he slowly matures and gains weight for him to wind up in the same division as Teofimo eventually, and who knows how long that’ll take. It could take years. With Teofimo’s stocky frame, he’ll probably wind up at 147 by the time he’s in his mid-20s.

Shakur (14-0, 8 KOs) says he had success landing counterpunches against Lomachenko during their sparring sessions.

Teofimo can transform himself into a superstar

“I’m going to say that early on, it’s going to be interesting to see what Teofimo can do early on to see if he can catch him [Lomachenko] with a big punch,” said Stevenson when asked how he sees the Loma vs. Teofimo fight going.

“Later on, in the fight, it’s going to favor Lomachenko because Lomachenko has been around. He’s been there before, and he’s got all the experience. Long-distance, it favors Lomachenko, but that’s the thing about boxing.

Teofimo Lopez Vasiliy Lomachenko

“You always got a puncher’s chance, and I think Teofimo has got a BIG punch at 135. If he catches Lomachenko, you never know how Lomachenko will react to it. He may turn himself into a superstar if he catches Lomachenko with a big punch.

“He’s sharp, he’s real sharp,” said Shakur when asked if Teofimo has good reflexes. “Didn’t Teofimo go 12 too? [Masayoshi] Nakatani and Lomachenko are two different fighters.

“Yeah, I think you need that type of fight. It helps you a lot. Just going rounds, and being in there, and having to adjust every single round. You never know in these fights what’s going to happen,” said Stevenson.

It’s going to be hard for Teofimo to land cleanly with one of his big shots with the way Lomachenko changes angles and moves in and out. Teofimo will need to time Lomachenko perfectly for when he’s coming forward for him to connect with a big enough shot to knock him out.

A knockout win for Teofimo over Lomachenko could vault him to the top of the sport, but it’s not going to keep him there for long.  It’s going to put Lopez near the top if he beats Loma with a knockout.

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