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Lomachenko And Pedraza Clash Saturday To Unify WBA And WBO Belts

by Daniel Gerbick on Wednesday, December 5th, 2018

vasyl lomachenko vs jose pedraza 2018For Vasyl Lomachenko (11-1, 9 KOs) and Puerto Rican Jose Pedraza (25-1, 12 KOs) the path to the undisputed lightweight championship begins on Saturday when the two face off at Madison Square Garden in New York.

The 33-year-old Ukrainian puts his WBA championship on the line against Pedraza’s WBO title with the aim of setting up a showdown with the undefeated Mikey Garcia, owner of the WBC’s lightweight title.

Through 12 fights Loma’s career is already full of milestones with two Olympic gold medals and three division championships. He’s coming off his eighth straight finish after knocking out Venezuelan Jorge Linares in the tenth round of a complicated fight where he was knocked down in round 6.

The 29-year-old Pedraza has had to work more to beat his opponents as he’s usually had to go the distance and rely on the judges’ scorecards to win.

Outside of his sole loss to WBA super featherweight champion Gervonta Davis, Pedraza has gone to the scorecards in his last seven wins, including the unanimous decision to win the WBO belt against Raymundo Beltran on August 25.

Pedraza, who’s proven to have the heart and conditioning to fight elite fighters, last finished an opponent in 2015, when he forced Mexican Juan Carlos Martinez to retire in the sixth round.

The Ukrainian, however, is a different kind of fighter that in his four-year career has destroyed his opponents and shredded the history books as he now holds the record for fewest fights to win titles in three different weight divisions.

Lomachenko, who has already won three fights at MSG, has the ability to turn his opponents and leap in and out of their range. This poses a problem causes a problem for everyone he faces, including Pedraza.

Pedraza is a big underdog, with the line in Sin City making Lomachenko a -3800 favorite, and with the comeback on Pedraza at +1300.

Regardless of who wins this fight the demand for a fight against Garcia will undoubtedly grow to find out, once and for all, who will reign supreme in the lightweight division.

 

 

 

 

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