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LOMACHENKO FIGHTING PACQUIAO IS INSANE SAYS UKRAINIAN'S MANAGER


PhilBoxing.com




Egis Klimas, the manager of Vasiliy Lomachenko closed down the rumor of Lomachenko fighting Manny Pacquiao in April. But Bob Arum of Top Rank is still open to the prospect of holding the bout on a later date. "No, we are not fighting Pacquiao. Manny Pacquiao is calling out Lomachenko, who is three weight classes down the scale from him. Manny Pacquiao is 147 pounds and he's calling out Lomachenko, who is 130 pounds. That's insane," Klimas told ESPN.

* * *

"The next thing you know, you'll have Gennady Golovkin calling out Lomachenko to fight. It would be like Sergey Kovalev calling out to fight Manny Pacquiao. It's ridiculous," Klimas added laughing. "He's an old man and Lomachenko beating him takes him nowhere," Klimas said of Pacquiao. "If the fight happened they'll all say Lomachenko beat an old man and made him come down."

* * *

Pacquiao (59-7, 38 KOs) turned 39 in December last year while Lomachenko (10-1, 8 KOs) will be 30 next month. "Look, we have our own agenda, our own road and our own plans. That's where we're going," Klimas said. "There's a lot of champions and good guys at 130 or 135 pounds. That's where we're going. Why isn't Pacquiao calling out Crawford? Crawford is moving into Pacquiao's weight class. Why doesn't he call out Garcia, who is at 140?"

* * *

Klimas said Guillermo Rigondeaux's moving up two weight classes was not the same as Lomachenko being challenged to increase his weight to face Pacquiao. "The difference is Lomachenko didn't call out Rigondeaux," he said. "Rigondeaux was willing and begging for the fight, so Lomachenko fought Rigondeaux."

* * *

"They had two gold medals each, they were both undefeated, and did that take Lomachenko somewhere? For Team Lomachenko, that fight didn't mean anything. He beat a small guy. Even if he beat Pacquiao, they'd say he beat an old guy who was basically retired. We want to fight active champions dominating their weight classes," declared Klimas.

* * *

Arum told ESPN that while a Pacquiao-Lomachenko match absolutely will not happen in April but the door was open for it to happen down the road, at least after Lomachenko's next fight in the springtime. "We discussed at one point Manny and Lomachenko fighting, but Lomachenko's father and trainer Anatoly Lomachenko said he didn't want him to jump up two divisions even though the fight would be at a catch weight of 140 pounds," Arum said. "His father said he wanted him to first go up to 135 pounds and then maybe they'd consider a fight with Pacquiao at 140 pounds later," explained Arum.

* * *

Pacquiao, eight weight division and eleven-time world champion, is contemplated to make a ring comeback and planned as part of the April 21 card featuring Terence Crawford fighting Jeff Horn for the WBO world welterweight title. Top Rank boss Arum envisioned the fight card to happen at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

* * *

But the venue and location is still unconfirmed because the National Hockey League (NHL) team Golden Knights, who lead the Pacific Division with 61 points, will possibly use the venue for the playoffs, which are scheduled to stary on April 11. Top Rank is hoping to settle the venue problem as soon as possible. “Unless they can get some clearance from the league, we can’t do it in Las Vegas because none of the other arenasare available and we would have to do it somewhere else,” Arum told the Las Vegas Review Journal.

* * *

The boxing card might be trasferred to Madison Square Garden in New York City on April 14 if negotiations in Las Vegas would fail. The fight would be Pacquiao's first ring emergence since losing his WBO world welterweight title in a big upset decision to Horn last July, before 51,000 spectators at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia.

* * *

Top Rank president Todd duBoef is expected to meet with MGM Resorts International president Bill Hornbuckle to figure out a solution. “Unless they can get some clearance from the league, we can’t do it in Las Vegas because none of the other arenas are available and we would have to do it somewhere else,” Arum said.

* * *

It has already been well-publicized that Pacquiao would be the opponent for the Crawford vs. Horn winner. But the problem right now, which Arum has yet to work out a solution, is whether the main event will be Pacquiao or Crawford vs. Horn. “We’re working on an opponent,” Arum said to the paper. “Don’t want to be too premature about that, but we’re working on it as we speak. Pacquiao seems like he wants to come back, so we’re trying to get that finalized. ESPN has a way to solve the main event issue, so it will be very interesting when we announce it.”

* * *

Pacquiao said on Wednesday in an ABS-CBN interview that he was negotiating for a blockbuster bout with world champion Vasyl Lomachenko, one of the best if not the best pound-for-pound fighter of the world. The fighting senator is eyeing to clash with the Ukrainian World Boxing Organization superfeatherweight champ during a break from his duties as a legislator. “There are negotiations now about the number one pound-for-pound boxer which is Lomachenko,” Pacquiao said in an interview on ABS-CBN television.

* * *

“There are still talks on the weight, reducing the weight,” said Pacquiao, who has has not scored a knockout win in the past eight years. Last December, Lomachenko made Rigondeaux pull out of the fight at the end of round six, allegedly due to an injured left hand as the Cuban became the fourth successive boxer to quit in a fight with Lomachenko after Nicholas Walters, Jason Sosa, and Miguel Marriaga.

* * *

Pacquiao rejected calls for him to retire for good, explaining he believes his recent losses did not blemish his record. "You know, I miss boxing,” Pacquiao said, adding he was “still okay.”
Pacquiao explained he would only train for three months for an April fight so he would not neglect his legislative duties. "That’s more than enough.” Pacquiao also stated that he was also open to fighting British boxer Amir Khan but said the match should be done in April when the Senate is on break.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.


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