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April 8th 2017, This Saturday Night live on HBO from the new MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, Vasyl Lomachenko (7-1-0, 5 KOs) defends his WBO World Super-featherweight title against the 5th ranked fighter in the division according to boxrec, Jason Sosa (20-1-4 ,15 KOs).
Boxing fans across the world have seemingly dubbed Lomachenko the future of boxing as even Bob Arum himself says he has not seen a more gifted boxer in his career. Mind you that Arum was the promoter for both Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard and you’ll now understand the hype (marketing) that Arum is putting on Lomachenko. In only his ninth professional fight, the two weight class world champion Lomachenko looks to build upon his fanfare by putting on a show of his now recognized unique abilities.
Top Rank Promotions hopes that Lomachenko can put on a show to attract fans but not be too impressive for fighters and or their rival promoters to be concerned about facing the explosive southpaw from Ukraine. If there’s any trend forming in boxing, then it’s the talent coming out under the once controlled Soviet Union countries producing pure fighters like Klitschko, Lomachenko, Golovkin, Postol, all world champions from Ukraine and Kazakhstan respectively.
Fighter Breakdown: Starting with the champion Lomachenko, the skills are endless for now. We all marvel at the speed of his feet and hands as he flawlessly moves in and out of the pocket against opponents while connecting on shots from angles fighters are not used to seeing. Mixing in the power and accuracy with the already existing flexibility, Lomachenko is not only a top boxer but a top athlete. If the guy wasn’t trying to box from Vegas, he’d be down the street performing in Cirque Du Soleil.
The most intriguing attribute for Lomachenko is his ability to use faint jabs as a tool to move his opponents gloves and unload a heavy straight left hand. While moving out of the pocket, he’s able to reset immediately. Therefore, leaving plenty of angles to hit his opponents as they least expect it, or know where the punch is coming from. A great fight to watch and see the style of offense is his fight vs Roman Martinez.
Jason Sosa on the other hand does understand the odds are stacked against him in many ways entering this fight. Fortunately, both fighters get paid. Sosa brings a unique style of boxing that has forced four decisions to be ruled a draw. Now many fans would look at that and say the guy has no power, wrong. Jason Sosa has a higher KO percentage professionally than Lomachenko at a rate of 75% of his wins. The draws are a huge sign that Sosa has a style that fighters can’t figure out and definitely cannot adjust too.
In Lomachenko’s only loss early in his career, came against Orlando Salido. He was out crafted by an extremely experienced fighter that used all the tricks in the bag to pull out a well-deserved win. But with that said, and Lomachenko’s new crown fitting snug, don’t be surprised if Sosa should catch popular fighter with a flash-knockdown should he come out foolishly. Sosa will have to exchange shots to win this fight as it will be extremely difficult to get the win from the judges. Never leave it to the judges!
Prediction: Vasyl Lomachenko should come into this fight and immediately establish a separation of talent levels by sending Sosa back to his stool after the first round with the notion of his opponent is for real. Speed kills, and Saturday will be no different. Look for Lomachenko to put on a show and win by late-round TKO.
US National TV: HBO Championship Boxing Live 9pm est/pst