By Steve Kim
This weekend from the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City, WBO super featherweight titlist Vasyl Lomachenko (9-1, 7 KOs) faces Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs) in an unprecedented battle of two-time Olympic gold medalists that will be televised on ESPN.
If Lomachenko should come out victorious, what's in store for the gifted southpaw in 2018?
"You can not believe the proposals that I have from all over the world who want a Lomachenko fight," said his promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, to BoxingScene.com. "I mean from Asia, to Europe to the Middle East, everybody wants Lomachenko. Maybe we'll have him do his next fight in Australia, England or the Middle East because ESPN has shown a great willingness to do fights from outside the country. And then bring him back here."
Lomachenko has already captured featherweight and super featherweight titles and Arum added - "I would say by the end of the year he'll be challenging for a world lightweight title."
As for how many times he'll perform in 2018, Arum explained," Lomachenko will fight in 2018 at least three times. He's going in December this year and then three more times. I said to Lomachenko four times a year but we're not on a calendar year."
This will be Lomachenko's first fight in the venue since his one-punch fifth-round knockout victory of three-time WBO junior lightweight champion Roman "Rocky" Martinez on June 11, 2016 to claim Martinez's title.
The Martinez victory not only made Lomachenko a two-division world champion, but he once again he broke a record doing it, winning world title No. 2 in a record least amount of fights -- seven.
Lomachenko captured his first world title -- the vacant WBO featherweight title -- winning a scintillating majority decision over the previously unbeaten and future world champion Gary Russell Jr. on June 21, 2014. It remains the only blemish on Russell's record.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com.