LAS VEGAS) Tonight, HBO Boxing will journey into the past before unveiling a “Hi-Tech” installment of “Back To The Future.”
After replaying the controversial superfight between Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev, the “Network of Champions” will present perhaps the best match-up of 2016 at The Cosmopolitan in Sin City. By almost any definition, WBO super featherweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko (6-1, 4KO's) vs. Nicholas “The Axeman” Walters (26-0-1, 21KO's) qualifies as the rare “superfight,” which happens when special fighters meet at their natural weights in their prime.
This will be the 2000th for Top Rank's Bob Arum, who seems determined to personally witness just how great Lomachenko is by matching him with the powerful Walters.
A CAN'T MISS FIGHT
“Any fighter can be knocked out, no matter who he is,” said Walters per press release from Top Rank. “I am fighting the best, and I like fighting a great technical fighter like Lomachenko.”
A 396-1 (which he avenged) multi-gold decorated amateur world champion and current two-division world champion as a pro in a record seven fights, Lomachenko may already be the very best fighter on the planet.
He is far superior to Sergey Kovalev and Roman Gonzalez technically, and is much sharper and more athletic pound-for-pound than Andre Ward. Gennady Golovkin is the most destructive fighter in the world, but Lomachenko is more dynamic with more dimension. With a sensational perfomance tonight over a lethal Walters, RING can make a case for Lomachenko being the true successor to Floyd Mayweather.
If you are a fan of the arts, Vasyl Lomachenko, 28, is a violent Mikhail Barshynikov with the ring vision of Steven Spielberg. Of all the great fighters I've seen at 130, Mayweather and the great Salvador Sanchez stand alone.
For perspective on how great I believe Lomachenko can be, he appears to be an amalgam of both all-time greats. Bob Arum is not wrong when he compares Lomachenko to a young Muhammad Ali.
Walters, 30, an extremely dangerous and offensively exciting fighter who competes with malice, is at least Azumah Nelson in tonight's superfight. The fiery African warrior gave Sanchez hell in July 1982 before going down in flames, and the same thing will happen tonight.
When I caught up with Lomachenko at T-Mobile Arena last week before Ward/Kovalev, I asked him for a forecast of the fight. “I expect Nicholas Walters to be very difficult for a few rounds,” said Lomachenko, before going modern Arnold Schwarzenegger. “Then I will seek to terminate him.
Look for Vasyl Lomachenko to systematically break down and destroy Nicholas Walters in eight amazing rounds.