By Keith Idec
Leonard Ellerbe considers Vasiliy Lomachenko an exceptionally talented fighter.
One of Gervonta Davis’ promoters is confident Davis could beat him if they ever fought, but Ellerbe believes Lomachenko is one of the best boxers in the world. Ellerbe just doesn’t think Lomachenko is as great as his promoter, Bob Arum, and countless others make Lomachenko sound while promoting or applauding him.
“I think he’s an outstanding talent,” Ellerbe told BoxingScene.com. “He’s not as good as they make him out to be, though. He’s not better than Terence Crawford.”
Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions, doesn’t believe Arum will actually make a Lomachenko-Teofimo Lopez fight, either. Arum told BoxingScene.com recently that he wants to match Lomachenko against Lopez at some point soon after Super Bowl LIV on February 2.
“That’s bullsh*t,” Ellerbe said. “That fight is not happening. That’s bullsh*t. Listen, it’s not gonna be Lopez. They know exactly what they’re doing. They have a great stable of young fighters and they know what they’re doing. I have nothing bad to say about them. The kid himself, Lopez, has told any and everyone that will listen to him, and even went to his promoter and gave his promoter a deadline, and said, ‘I wanna fight him.’
“The kid has gotten a lot of exposure. People know who he is and they can make that fight tomorrow. But guess what? They didn’t get this far and become as good as they have been in the sport by making bad decisions. There’s no doubt in my mind that they feel Lopez will beat Lomachenko – no doubt in my mind. I don’t give a sh*t if he’s got 12 fights. With his style, he beats Lomachenko. It ain’t about that kid [Lomachenko] having 400 [amateur] fights and all of that. [Lopez] beats his ass. That’s why the conversation is deflected to other things.”
Ellerbe realizes his assessment of Lomachenko-Lopez will invite criticism because he has repeatedly explained that Mayweather Promotions doesn’t intend to make a Davis-Lomachenko match anytime soon. He is fine with that backlash, but Ellerbe still reminded curious fans that they shouldn’t actually expect Arum to put together a bout between the 31-year-old Lomachenko (13-1, 10 KOs), the WBA/WBO lightweight champion, and the 21-year-old Lopez (12-0, 10 KOs).
“They should keep Gervonta Davis’ name out of their mouths,” Ellerbe said. “They’ve got a good fight that they can make in house. All they’ve gotta do is talk to the kid and his team, and talk to Lomachenko and his team. They all have the same promoter. Why are they talking about Gervonta Davis?”
The Brooklyn-bred, Las Vegas-based Lopez is scheduled to face Finland’s Edis Tatli (31-2, 10 KOs) in a 10-rounder Saturday night at Madison Square Garden in New York. The Lopez-Tatli bout will be part of the ESPN Pay-Per-View undercard before Crawford (35-0, 24 KOs) defends his WBO welterweight title against England’s Amir Khan (33-4, 20 KOs) in the 12-round main event.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.