Lomachenko Outclasses Sosa
“I came to show my “High-Tech” style and to prove that I am the best fighter in the world,” said Lomachenko. “I think I did my job…”
Saturday night at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, WBO super featherweight champion Vasyl “High-Tech” Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs), the southpaw from Oxnard, California, by way of Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Ukraine, successfully defended his title by stopping Jason “El Canito” Sosa (20-2-4, 15 KOs), from Camden, New Jersey, at 3:00 of round nine.
Fighting out of the red corner in green trunks with black trim, Lomachenko was a 25:1 favorite coming in. With his pound-for-pound bona fides and all-around superior skills, he took control of the fight at the opening bell and easily won every round.
Sosa, fighting out of the blue corner in white and gold trunks, did all he could to make the match competitive. He still holds the WBA title, but he was outclassed early and outclassed late before the fight was stopped by his corner to prevent his being seriously hurt.
“It was the accumulation of punches, and the fact that I didn’t want to see him get hurt,” said Sosa’s trainer, Raul Rivas, “that I stopped the fight,”
Sosa’s left eye began to swell in round three. Lomachenko had him hurt in the eighth and ninth rounds, as Sosa, unable to land any punches, was a sitting duck.
“I came to show my “High-Tech” style and to prove that I am the best fighter in the world,” said Lomachenko after the fight. “I think I did my job. I am going to call Top Rank Monday and see if I can fight any of the 130-pound champions. If we can’t get anybody we can move to 135.
Lomachenko is a rare talent and at 29 he is in his prime. He is not a knockout artist, per se, despite his 67 percent KO ratio. But he beats down opponents with efficiency and grace, using power, speed and exemplary footwork, as well as an off-the-chart ring IQ, to baffle opponents at the same time that he wows fight fans.
Although Sosa was hurt a few times, the challenger stayed upright, a tribute to his fighting heart. But he was severely overmatched going up against one the finest fighters in the game today.
Top Rank’s Bob Arum has been singing Lomachenko’s praises since before he turned pro, and while he is no stranger to hyperbole, in this instance he may be right.
“Nobody that I have ever seen does with his body and his footwork what he does,” said Arum. “The way he is able to measure distance so well is amazing. It takes him a little time to measure it right, getting closer and closer to punches that could really hurt him but gets him into a better position to fire his own punches. Once he’s able to do that, the opponent has no answer.
“Ali, for that time, nobody—nobody—had ever seen a heavyweight fight the way Ali did. Right now, Lomachenko has shown the style and a skill that nobody I’ve seen ever has had other than the Ali. Now, the question then is can Lomachenko have the longevity of that skill? Can somebody down the road solve it? I rate him as the most skilled, best fighter in boxing.”
But perhaps Sosa said it best.
“I couldn’t execute anything. He is the closest fighter to perfection in boxing.”