By Keith Idec
Abel Sanchez doesn’t see Vasyl Lomachenko-Mikey Garcia as the highly competitive matchup most consider it.
“Lomachenko eats him up,” Sanchez told Fight Hub TV at the Lomachenko-Miguel Marriaga card Saturday night in Los Angeles. “That’s my opinion. I think Lomachenko eats him up.”
When asked to elaborate on why he thinks the smaller Lomachenko would beat the undefeated WBC lightweight champion so easily, the veteran trainer said, “I think Lomachenko’s one of the best fighters around right now.”
Ukraine’s Lomachenko (9-1, 7 KOs) dominated Colombia’s Marriaga (25-3, 21 KOs) for seven rounds before their fight for Lomachenko’s WBO 130-pound championship was stopped at Microsoft Theater. Lomachenko dropped Marriaga twice, once apiece in the third and seventh rounds.
Gennady Golovkin’s trainer was impressed by Garcia’s performance against Adrien Broner on July 29 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. He noticed, though, that Garcia’s power wasn’t as much of a weapon at 140 pounds as it was when he was at 126, 130 and 135 pounds.
That’s why Sanchez thinks the possibility of Garcia eventually moving up to 147 pounds is a bad idea.
“I would hate to see that,” Sanchez said. “I don’t think [anything] above 35 is a good weight for him. Thirty-five is probably the best weight for him.”
Garcia acknowledged after he beat Broner that he would consider moving up to welterweight to challenge WBA/WBC champion Keith Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs, 1 NC). The 29-year-old Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs) is more likely to remain at 140 pounds for the right fight, or move back down to lightweight for a title unification fight, preferably against WBA champion Jorge Linares (42-3, 27 KOs).
Venezuela’s Linares must first beat British southpaw Luke Campbell (17-1, 14 KOs), his mandatory challenger, on September 23 at The Forum in Inglewood, California (HBO).
“I would like to see him fight Linares,” Sanchez said. “That would be a good fight.”
As for Lomachenko, Sanchez doesn’t appear all that interested in watching him fight Guillermo Rigondeaux, either. The Cuban-born Rigondeaux (17-0, 11 KOs, 1 NC) would have to move up from 122 pounds to 130 to challenge Lomachenko, but the WBA super bantamweight champion has been calling out the two-time Olympic gold medalist.
“I think Rigondeaux’s a little too small,” Sanchez said.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.