“I got Lomachenko winning, but I got it 60-40,” said the trainer Don Saxby (pictured above), who has a stable of young gun up ’n comers, and works out of the famed and fabled Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, on Friday afternoon.
He, like, I dare say, most of us devotees of the sweet and savage science, is feeling a high degree of anticipation as he ponders the high stakes violent chess match between two gold medalist turned ace pros, Vasyl Lomachenko..
.. a boxing Baryshnikov, and counter-punch master Guillermo Rigondeaux..
..who defected from Cuba and is seeking to show boxing planet that he is a master talent and a fan friendly one, too.
Saxby told me why he thinks this is just about a coin flip fight, to him.
“I got it 60-40, for Loma, because of size, and output,” he continued, as trainer Leon Taylor listened in. “My heart is with Rigo, but my smarts is with Loma.”
“I’m going with Rigondeaux,” Taylor piped in. “He’s a counter puncher, Loma gonna come, and Rigo gonna get him, catch him in between punches.”
They both agreed that either scenario could play out.
We all agreed, too, that Loma has improved as a pro, after ten fights. He’s acclimated, learned that it can be an alley fight at times. I think it possible that Loma could be, like Terence Crawford, moving to a place where he’s inclined to take guys out earlier, not be as patient a predator. “Rigo for me, believe it or not, is the puncher of the two,” Saxby said. Taylor agreed and thinks that power will no doubt go from 122 to 130. He thinks Rigo could darn well stop the Ukrainian. Both trainers say no doubt, the Cuban power will come to 130 with him.
Both men had exemplary sparring, Saxby noted, so their knives will be sharp as hell.
Talk to me, friends. Rigo versus Loma, the vet who some think is past his prime, at 37, against Loma, age 29, likely not yet at his professional peak…Who wins, and how?