By Keith Idec
Vasyl Lomachenko wasn’t overly impressed by Mikey Garcia on Saturday night.
The WBO super featherweight champion watched Garcia out-box Adrien Broner, but nothing he saw would make him think twice about moving up from 130 pounds to 135 to face Garcia. Ukraine’s Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs) discussed Garcia on Monday during a conference call to promote his WBO super featherweight title defense against Colombia’s Miguel Marriaga (25-2, 21 KOs) on Saturday night at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles (ESPN).
“I did see his fight,” Lomachenko said through a translator. “His trainer, Robert Garcia, at one point mentioned Mikey Garcia is a fighter of ‘A’ class. I didn’t see anything during that bout where he was a Class-A, outstanding fighter. Yes, he won the fight. Yes, he did everything to win the fight, [the way] it needs to be. But I haven’t seen nothing outstanding. I haven’t seen him being an A-Class fighter. And it was slow. I almost got to sleep.”
Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs) mentioned Lomachenko as a potential opponent before and after he beat Broner by unanimous decision in a 12-round main event Saturday night at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. The unbeaten WBC lightweight champion has been applauded for moving up five pounds and soundly defeating Broner (33-3, 24 KOs, 1 NC), a former four-division champion from Cincinnati.
Todd duBoef, president for Top Rank Inc. (Lomachenko’s promoter), joined Lomachenko on Monday in downplaying Garcia’s performance.
“I saw the fight, believe it or not, and I didn’t think it was an incredible performance,” duBoef said. “I thought he out-pointed Broner, but I didn’t think it was a scintillating fight. I mean, I thought he won the fight clearly. But I wasn’t saying, ‘Oh, my God! The masses are clamoring for Mikey Garcia.’
“I’m being honest with you. I think he had a nice fight. He fought well. Broner wasn’t throwing a lot of punches and I thought Mikey did a good job. But a big name? A big name is Mikey Garcia now? I don’t see that.”
Garcia and Top Rank reached a financial settlement in May 2016 to end their promotional partnership, but Garcia has expressed interest in facing three Top Rank fighters – Lomachenko, unbeaten WBC/WBO super lightweight champion Terence Crawford and Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao – since he parted ways with Bob Arum’s promotional company.
“Mikey Garcia, after the fight, said clearly, ‘Whoever is willing to fight on Showtime, come and I’ll fight you,’ ” said Egis Klimas, Lomachenko’s manager. “He’s already choosing a network. I think we’re in a different way. We would love to fight Mikey Garcia. It would give a big name to Vasyl.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.