Vasiliy Lomachenko had plenty to say in the aftermath of his lightweight championship defeat to Teofimo Lopez.
The most important lesson he took away from the fight is that there isn’t else he can say that will change the outcome.
“What I learned the most from that fight is that I can’t get that time back,” Lomachenko told BoxingScene.com. “I have watched the fight. I’ve reviewed what I could have done to win the fight. It happened. All I can do is move forward and position myself to regain my titles.”
Lomachenko (14-2, 10KOs) conceded his WBA/WBO lightweight titles along with designation as WBC “Franchise” champion to Lopez (16-0, 12KOs), who defended his IBF title while claiming the rest of the hardware in their unification bout last October 17 at MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas. The bout saw Ukraine’s Lomachenko suffer his first defeat since a split-decision loss to an overweight Orlando Salido in their March 2014 WBO featherweight title fight.
The first step towards reclaiming his place atop the lightweight division takes place this weekend. Lomachenko—a two-time Olympic Gold medalist and former three-division titlist—faces Japan’s Masayoshi Nakatani (19-1-1, 13KOs) on Saturday, live on ESPN+ from Virgin Hotels Las Vegas. The bout is his second straight in town and sixth overall dating back to his October 2013 pro debut at Thomas & Mack Center.
The fight with Lopez came during the pandemic and at a time when fans were not permitted to attend events in Nevada. Such restrictions are since lifted, with a full house expected on hand this weekend to see if Lomachenko return to his winning ways.
“My goal is to be as active as possible but more importantly against the highest level of competition,” notes Lomachenko. “It doesn’t matter where the fight takes place. What matters is that I’m fighting, the fans are back and I plan to win back my titles.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox