By Keith Idec
OXON HILL, Maryland – Terence Crawford isn’t the only one who can’t see a fight between him and Vasyl Lomachenko taking place.
Egis Klimas, Lomachenko’s manager, considers his phenomenal fighter entirely too small to face Crawford in the future. As appealing as an eventual encounter might seem to fans and media, Crawford, the WBC/WBO super lightweight champion, fights two weight classes above Lomachenko.
Klimas is in favor of Ukraine’s Lomachenko moving up to lightweight, first for a shot at WBO world lightweight champion Terry Flanagan (33-0, 13 KOs). If Lomachenko becomes a three-division champion by beating Flanagan, Klimas then would want to make a high-profile lightweight title fight against unbeaten WBC champ Mikey Garcia (36-0, 30 KOs).
By then, the 5-feet-8 Crawford figures to have moved to welterweight, still two weight classes away from where the 5-feet-6 Lomachenko would be competing.
“Forget about Crawford,” Klimas told BoxingScene.com following Lomachenko’s technical knockout of Jason Sosa (20-2-4, 15 KOs) on Saturday night. “We had a very good example when the guy from England, Kell Brook, fought Triple-G. He looked fantastic. He came in the ring and he looked fantastic, but he was too small for Triple-G. He dominated him. So fighting a champion who’s two weight classes [above him], I think that would be suicide. It would be crazy.”
Crawford didn’t go quite that far, yet he, too, thinks it’s unrealistic to expect Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs) to keep moving up and to remain as effective as he has been in the featherweight and super featherweight divisions. Despite losing his second professional fight to Mexican veteran Orlando Salido (43-13-4, 30 KOs, 1 NC), Lomachenko, like Crawford, is commonly considered one of the top 10 boxers, pound-for-pound, in the world.
The 29-year-old Crawford was asked about boxing Lomachenko last week while in New York to promote his next fight.
The Omaha, Nebraska, native understands the intrigue, but acknowledged, “at the same time that guy is little. I take no credit from him. He’s at 130, and he’s at 130 for a reason.
“If he was big enough, he would be at 135, 140, and he would be campaigning at them weights. Lomachenko’s a tremendous talent. But again, he’s at 130, I’m at 140.”
Crawford (30-0, 21 KOs), who’ll face Felix Diaz (19-1, 9 KOs) on May 20 at Madison Square Garden, also said, “Lomachenko just got to 130. And I’m at 140, about to go up to 147. So I don’t even see that fight being realistic.
“It’s just, once again, people see how good and technical Lomachenko is, and they see how good and technical Terence Crawford is. And they’ll look for the next person that they think can beat you, or could have a great match with you.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.