Having already shared the ring with him, Jose Pedraza is well-versed on the boxing brilliance of Vasiliy Lomachenko.
The former two-division titlist believes that at some point, a similar lesson will be taught to Teofimo Lopez.
Pedraza has his own fight to concentrate on this weekend as he faces Javier Molina in a junior welterweight pairing of 2008 Olympians this Saturday. Their ESPN+ headliner—which airs live from The Bubble in Las Vegas—will mark Pedraza’s third fight at the weight and fourth overall since a December 2018 points loss to Ukraine’s Lomachenko (14-1, 10KOs) to end his lightweight title reign.
Lomachenko has since evolved into a unified lightweight titlist, looking to add another belt to his collection. His unification bout with Brooklyn’s Lopez (15-0, 12KOs) takes place October 17, live on ESPN also from The Bubble and with the winner gaining universal recognition as the best lightweight on the planet.
Pedraza (27-3, 13KOs) has an idea of how it will play out.
“Honestly, I think Vasiliy Lomachenko will dominate the fight,” Pedraza told BoxingScene.com. “I think he’ll win big, although he can't get reckless.
“Teofimo Lopez is an explosive fighter with a lot of power. He can hurt anyone at lightweight.”
Pedraza held his own with the two-time Olympic Gold medalist and three-division titlist in their December 2018 unification bout, as he was within one point on two of the three cards after five rounds. Lomachenko picked up steam after that, dominating the rest of the fight and dropping Pedraza twice en route to a clear-cut decision win.
“I was proud of my performance that night, I knew who I was facing and the fight was close until he dropped me,” notes Pedraza, who has won two of his past three fights since that night. “Once he can figure out, he just takes over the fight.
“The start of the fight will be important to Teofimo Lopez. If he can hurt Vasiliy Lomachenko in the first five rounds, he could end the fight. If not, I believe Lomachenko will dominate him.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox