A unanimous decision ensured Teofimo Lopez came out tops in his world lightweight title unification fight against Vasiliy Lomachenko in Las Vegas on Saturday night.
Undefeated IBF champion Lopez upset the pound-for-pound great Lomachenko who was rated as the world’s top boxer, snatching away his WBA, WBO, and WBC ‘franchise’ belts in a significant victory.
Lomachenko seemed a shadow of himself as he struggled and ultimately had a difficult time against Lopez who was naturally larger and more powerful, and nine years younger.
Lopez also ensured he backed up his pre-fight trash talk with an impressive win in his 16th professional fight.
He is also now the leading 135lbs fighter in the world after dethroning the brilliantly talented Lomachenko with a performance of authority and poise.
Lopez did not allow Lomachenko any freedom to display his genius and by the halfway point it was remarkable how cautiously Lomachenko had approached the fight.
Loma was unwilling to trade punches and he remained on his back foot with Lopez throwing far more shots and trying to force the action.
Lopez’s right hand started to repeatedly find its target in the seventh round and by then, it was obvious that Lomachenko was struggling to contend with a younger, larger opponent.
in the eighth round, Lomachenko had his first meaningful breakthrough as he emerged from his cautious shell with a left-hand counter towards the end of the bout.
The Ukrainian had his best moments in the latter stages as he was allowed to let more punches fly when it seemed like Lopez had tired out and is becoming lacklustre.
Lomachenko showed that his footwork remains as crisp as ever but in the last 10 seconds, a brawl that many had hoped for much earlier broke out and Lopez emerged with a small cut.
But the judges all gave the nod to Lopez (116-112, 119-109, 117-111) as he went home as the No 1 lightweight in the world.
Watch the full match highlights below
Lopez dedicated the win to his father as both fighters were each led to this unification fight by their fathers, two extremely different men who also act as their sons’ trainers.
Lopez Sr started the rivalry with Lomachenko two years ago in a hotel lobby when he screamed at the then-champion that his son would eventually take over.
Lopez Sr was a hustler but also the only member of the family to attend his son’s wedding when others disapproved.
“We’ve had our trials but we work well together now,” Lopez Jr tells Sky Sports. “We have learned.
“I can’t see myself being where I am now without him.
“My father never gave up on me, and I never gave up either.“