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With both fighters dialed-in on one another, the Top Rank promoter says they could meet this fall whether or not fans are permitted to attend.
Top Rank’s Bob Arum has confirmed the ESPN that with neither lightweight titleholder Vasiliy Lomachenko nor Teofimo Lopez being interested in a tune-up fight, they’ll indeed meet straightaway once the logistics for staging boxing matches gets ironed out. But for now Arum is looking at this fall for that much anticipated fight to happen.
“In talking with Lomachenko and Lopez, neither of them want an interim fight. So we would plan to do that in September, with or without an audience.”
As it stands Lomachenko is currently in his home country of the Ukraine during this coronavirus pandemic, but he does maintain permanent residence status in the US and therefore could make his way back into the country. And with Lomachenko-Lopez being a fight that fans have been looking forward to for some time now, Arum believes there’s creative ways to make the fight work financially, even without depending on a live gate.
“It certainly would be a pay-per-view,” Arum said. “… It’s a big fight that we can do something spectacular in conjunction with the Las Vegas Convention [and Visitors] Authority. Do a big outdoor event. There’s a lot of innovative stuff you can do and still adhering to the mandate of social distancing.”
Lomachenko (14-1, 10 KOs) is most recently coming off a unanimous decision win over Luke Campbell last August in a successful title defense while Lopez (15-0, 12 KOs) scored a prompt stoppage of Richard Commey to win his IBF title in December.
With as starved as we’ve been for boxing lately, let alone big fights, I say bring this one on sooner than later.