Lomachenko A Boss, Walters Pulls A NO MAS
Vasyl Lomachenko was getting fully warmed up and ready to rumble after taking a bit to figure out Nicholas Walters from the Cosmo in Las Vegas on Saturday night, and on HBO regular.
The going got tougher for Walters, and then Walters got going, telling the ref after seven rounds that he wanted to quit.
He wasn't winning rounds, but he hadn't been dropped or obviously badly buzzed, but he opted out. No Mas, said the supposed Axeman, who landed four punches in the last round and then said hell with it.
Was he injured? He didn't cite anything. He just didn't think he could win, it seems. He said after he was rusty and was hurt in the seventh and didn't think it prudent to continue. Weak reasoning and shame on him for blaming promoters and programmers for only giving him one fight a year.
“This was a disappointing fight, a disappointing ending,” said Max Kellerman after. Indeed; the fight wasn't scintillating and was just heating up when Walters pulled the parachute. Loma was winning rounds but not ripping shots, getting angles and then rat-a-tatting his foe.
The HBO boys talked about Loma versus Pacquiao, and Max said Loma is the number one pound for pound.
The WBO super featherweight title held by Loma was up for grabs and anticipation was high that momentum from last week's Sergey Kovalev v Andre Ward tango. No dice, as the long odds versus Walters proved to be on target.
This event was the 2,000th event promoted by Bob Arum, who started in this sphere in 1966. He said before it was worthy of such milestone status; on paper, yes, but Loma was too skilled and Walters not willing enough to risk enough to go for broke.
The Ukrainian Loma (age 28) who had 400 amateur fights, came in at 6-1. Walters (from Jamaica; ex featherweight champ; age 30) was 26-0-1, and came in to the bout telling folks he needed a KO to win.
In the first, they sized each other up. Loma looked busier with the jab and his ring generalship was better in s tight one.
In the second, another tight one. Loma had slightly better hand speed but Walters wasn't out quicked.
In the third, Walters stood his ground more, tried to time Loma coming in, but neither man was dialed in.
In the fourth, we saw Loma land lefts. He was nastier, more insistent. His jab was busy if not super accurate. Loma was told to go body then head after the round.
In the fifth, Walters was too busy being defensive. He wanted to win with a crafty counter, not volume. But this wasn't a winning strategy.
In the sixth, Loma edged closer. Walters would be smart defending then throw a single counter.
In the seventh, the action heated up. Loma was in his face. He ate a left hook but didn't care. Walters landed just four punches. And then waved the white flag…