Published: Mon, May 14, 2018
Sports | By Ivan Ross

Vasyl Lomachenko wins WBA Lightweight title with ridiculous stoppage of Jorge Linares

Vasyl Lomachenko wins WBA Lightweight title with ridiculous stoppage of Jorge Linares

A passionate crowd of 10,429 was in attendance for one of the most anticipated fights in boxing and certainly one of the most competitive fights with intrigue and indecision amongst many.

The loss was the first for Linares, 32, since March 2012 when he went down to Mexican Sergio Thompson. Lomachenko immediately jumped to his feet and made it clear to Linares that no finishing is not the point. Lomachenko bounced right up, looking more embarrassed than hurt, but suddenly it felt like a fight again. Lomachenko hit the bigger man with the flawless left hook to the body. Lomachenko took it well and fired punches back at Linares. Steve Weisfeld had Lomachenko up 86-84; Robin Taylor favored Linares by the same score, and Julie Lederman had it even. Lomachenko was leading 87-83 on Newsday's card. Lomachenko scored another telling combination as the final minute mark came in the round.

Lomachenko wins by body shot knockout at 2:08 of the tenth round.

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Lomachenko outlanded Linares, 213-207, according to CompuBox.

Five saw Lomachenko tee off on Linares at close quarters, circling around Linares making him miss and switching the angle centre ring. This was evident in rounds 7 and 8 as Lomachenko was much more tactical and cautious to impose his will on the champion, who appeared to be mentally rejuvenated by the knockdown.

Linares responded with some decent work, but Lomachenko probably entered the ninth in the lead having shaded another high-octane round. It had to be demoralizing to Linares to be unable to capitalize on the opportunity. Lomachenko landed a right hook and then his straight left hand later in the eighth, but Linares fired back with hard shots of his own. But his knockdown of Lomachenko in Round 6, on a stiff counter right hand, shifted the momentum completely as Lomachenko fell to his rear end and needed another full round to regain his mojo.

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However, Top Rank chairman Bob Arum, who promotes Lomachenko, praised both fighters at the post-fight news conference. Linares looked like he might make it up. Linares got up on wobbly legs, but wasn't fit to continue.

Vasyl Lomachenko, the best all-around fighter since Floyd Mayweather continued his greatness on Saturday night.

Ukraine's Lomachenko survived a sixth-round knock-down to set a record in claiming a world title in a third weight division in just his 12th professional fight.

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Arum said Lomachenko will return on another Top Rank Boxing on ESPN main event on August 25 at The Forum in Inglewood, California, which raises a lot of questions.

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