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Bob Arum says Lomachenko bigger fight for Kambosos than Haney, “nobody knows who Devin is”

George Kambosos Jr, Vasiliy Lomachenko boxing photo

By Jim Calfa: Bob Arum is feeling optimistic about his chances of setting up a fight with Vasily Lomachenko and undisputed lightweight champion George Kambosos Jr. for April in a stadium in Australia.

Arum believes that the highly accomplished two-time Olympic gold medalist and former three-division world champion Lomachenko (16-2, 11 KOs) has a better chance of getting the fight with Kambosos than WBC 135-lb champion Devin Haney.

According to Arum, Haney (27-0, 15 KOs) isn’t as well known in Australia compared to the 33-year-old Lomachenko, which makes sense given that he’s older and has done A LOT more than the 23-year-old MatchroomBoxing promoted fighter.

What further hurts Haney is the fact that he was elevated to WBC lightweight champion outside of the ring in October 2019 rather than earning it. Hence, this is the reason why many boxing fans refer to Haney as an “email champion.”  

Haney’s promoter Eddie Hearn thinks he’s got an excellent chance of getting the fight with Kambosos due to it being a match that would settle the undisputed lightweight situation.

it would upset Hearn badly if Arum were able to set up a fight between Lomachenko and Kambosos because the British promoter needs Haney to beat Kambosos to help him become a star rapidly.

Currently, Kambosos holds the IBF, WBA, WBC Franchise, and WBO lightweight titles. Hearn maintains that the Franchise title isn’t a real one, and it doesn’t count for the undisputed championship.

However, the World Boxing Council is referring to Kambosos as their undisputed champion at 135, and that’s good enough for most boxing fans.

Arum: Nobody knows Haney in Australia

“We’re talking to Lou [DiBella] and Peter [Kahn] and we’re optimistic because we have really good contacts inside Australia,” said Bob Arum to Fighthype when asked about the possibility of Top Rank setting up a fight between Lomachenko and Kambosos for April.

George Kambosos Jr, Vasiliy Lomachenko boxing photo

“COVID is in the way, but I think it’ll be okay and ESPN is ready to step up to the plate to get that fight done.

“Truth be told, nobody knows who Devin Haney is in Australia,”  Arum continued. “Really, he hasn’t had any exposure. Everybody that follows boxing around the world, including Australia, knows Lomachenko.

“So, Lomachenko would be a much bigger match in Australia than Devin Haney would be [for Kambosos].

It’s  almost impossible for the average casual boxing fan to know who Haney is because he hasn’t faced anyone talented during his career. Haney’s best wins are against these fighters:

  • Yurirokis Gamboa
  • Joseph ‘Jojo’ Diaz Jr
  • Jorge Linares
  • Juan Carlos Burgos
  • Alfredo Santiago

Haney is definitely not a super well-known fighter in Australia because he hasn’t been around long enough for the fans to become familiar with him.

Arum was surprised by Lomachenko’s loss

“I was shocked when I saw Lomachenko against [Teofimo] Lopez,”  said Arum in reflecting on the injured Loma’s loss toTeofimo in October 2020.

“But two days after the fight, Lomachenko was in the doctor’s office and his shoulder was being operated on.

“So, it wasn’t any nonsense. Why he didn’t let us know so we could postpone the fight is beyond me, but it is what it is,” said Arum.

It was obvious that Lomachenko had a shoulder injury for the fight with Teofimo because he wasn’t using his right arm for anything. It was all left-hand shots from Lomachenko.

Teofimo coming back at 140 once healthy

First we want to get him healthy,” said Arum when asked what he plans on doing with Teofimo following his loss to Kambosos last November. “He should have never been fighting at 135 against Kambosos.

“He almost had a fatality. He also died because of the way he made weight. It’s not a joke. I think he’ll be okay at 140. He has some other physical problems that we’re working on him now and taking care of him.

“Once those problems are solved [for Teofimo], we’ll look for an opponent and get him back in the ring,”  said Arum.

It’s possible that Teoifmo may need to move up to 147 if he struggles with the weight at 140. As big as Teofimo is, he’s going to struggle to make 140.

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