Loma dominates Nakatani, wants rematch with Lopez

Vasiliy Lomachenko came back on Saturday night and showed why he is still one of the pound-for-pound best in the sport of boxing. The three-weight world champion knocked out Masayoshi Nakatani in the ninth round of a lightweight main event at The Theater at Virgin Hotels Las Vegas.

Due to an accidental clash of heads in Round 1, Lomachenko (15-2, 11 KOs) faced some adversity, but it was pretty much the only issue he had with Nakatani (19-2, 13 KOs).

In the fifth round, Lomachenko dropped Nakatani with a left-right combination and with beating up Nakatani. The end came in the ninth round when Celestino Ruiz called an end to the action.

“I’m happy because I won,” Loma said after the fight. “All the strategies that we developed with my team {worked}. I reached all my goals. I won, and now I’m back on track.”

Lomachenko, 33, now wants to settle the score with the undisputed 135-pound champion, Teofimo Lopez, who beat him by unanimous decision last October. Loma started slow in that fight, but he still thought he should have gotten the nod.

“Everybody saw how I won this fight,” he said. “And everybody is waiting for the rematch {with Lopez}, so let’s make a rematch. 

“He has a fight in the future with {George} Kambosos, but how about after, in the beginning of next year? December, January, February, I am waiting.”

Loma lost to Lopez, and that was pretty clear. However, things could be much different in the rematch, especially when you consider Loma had a shoulder injury entering that fight. The shoulder appears fine, and we’ll see if he gets the rematch with Lopez.

It’s a big fight, and a fight, according to Lopez’s father and trainer, Teofimo Lopez Sr, that his son is willing to do after Kambosos. Let’s hope it happens.

Photo: Mikey Williams/Top Rank via Getty Images)

Lopez: ‘My goal is to be a worldwide star’

Teofimo Lopez has star potential written all over him. Lopez(13-0, 11 KOs) is one of the more exciting fighters in the sport of boxing, and whether he is dancing, backflipping, and most importantly, knocking guys out, he is definitely a fighter on the rise.

However, on July 19, the undefeated Lopez has a stern test against fellow unbeaten fighter Masayoshi Nakatani at MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland.

“I’m excited to come back, especially for my first headlining bout, one of many to come,” Lopez said. “After Nakatani, you will see me face the winner of Richard Commey and Ray Beltran. If you think you’ve seen it all, you haven’t. My goal is to be a worldwide star, and Nakatani is not going to stop me. Expect another badass knockout, and rest assured, I have something special planned for the celebration. For this fight, we’re doing a nine-week training camp, and I am going to be in the best shape of my career.

“The Takeover is coming July 19 to MGM National Harbor!”

While the show is all about Lopez, Nakatani(18-0, 12 KOs), who has stopped his last four opponents, will be making his American debut. The ultimate goal for Nakatani is to spoil “The Takeover.”

“This fight is just a stop on the way to becoming world champion,” Nakatani said. “I hope all boxing fans in Japan and around the world will enjoy what I bring to the table.”

A win for the 21-year-old Lopez means a fight against the winner of Commey-Beltran, and even more significant than that, could be a fight with Vasiliy Lomachenko in the near future, which is a fight Lopez has been saying he wants. However, none of this happens without a victory over Nakatani.