By Keith Idec
NEW YORK – Bob Arum couldn’t believe what he heard.
When Vasiliy Lomachenko’s promoter learned his fighter was behind by two points on one scorecard entering that fateful 10th round Saturday night, Arum wondered how that was possible. Judge Robin Taylor had Linares ahead, 86-84, in what had been a very competitive, tactical lightweight title bout before Lomachenko stopped Linares with a body shot in the 10th round at Madison Square Garden.
Another judge, Steve Weisfeld, scored the fight for Lomachenko through nine rounds, 86-84. The third judge, Julie Lederman, had it even after nine rounds (85-85).
Lederman scored five rounds for Lomachenko and four rounds for Linares. She had it even entering the 10th round because Linares knocked down Lomachenko with a perfect straight right hand with 31 seconds remaining in the sixth round.
Arum seemed to agree with Weisfeld’s scorecard. Weisfeld scored six rounds for Ukraine’s Lomachenko (11-1, 9 KOs) and three rounds for Venezuela’s Linares (44-4, 27 KOs).
“I gave Linares maybe three rounds – maybe,” Arum said. “That’s all I could find for him. But again, I’m prejudiced. I mean, the scorecard that had Linares ahead, what fight was the guy watching?”
New York’s Taylor actually is a woman who has worked numerous championship fights during her 16½-year career as a judge. She scored five rounds for Linares and four rounds for Lomachenko.
Not surprisingly, Lomachenko was much more diplomatic than Arum regarding the scoring of his fight.
“It’s not my job,” Lomachenko said during the post-fight press conference. “It’s not my work. I can’t comment [on] their job.”
The three-division champion also applauded Linares for giving him such a difficult fight.
According to unofficial CompuBox numbers, Lomachenko out-landed Linares by a very slim margin overall (213-of-627 to 207-of-739). CompuBox credited Linares for connecting on more power punches (139-of-359 to 101-of-237) and Lomachenko for landing more jabs (112-of-390 to 68-of-380).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.