Lomachenko vs Rigondeaux: Stats, facts and highlightsWritten by Leroy Cleveland
"[Lomachenko vs Rigondeaux] is the best paper made fight ever. You can't find two fighters better on paper to put against each other. That's the best fight I ever seen made on paper, and I can't wait," stated fight legend Roy Jones Jr.
It was one of the most epic match-ups in boxing history but certainly not the fight many expected.
Ukrainian Vasyl Lomachenko (10-1, 8 KOs) easily defeated Cuban Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-1, 11 KOs) in a historic battle of two-time Olympic gold medalists and top 10 pound-for-pound fighters; And it wasn't even close.
And to add insult to injury (pun not intended), the great Cuban, after being thoroughly out-boxed for the first six rounds, quit on his stool despite not having been cut, staggered or knocked down. He cited an injured left hand.
Of course the 37-year-old Rigondeaux, who looked much smaller in the ring than his foe tonight, moved up two weight classes for this opportunity and was a solid underdog. However, he promised fans size wouldn't be an issue and had us expecting more... A lot more.
A defensive wizard, Rigo was crafty at times and didn't allow Lomachenko to land many hayemakers. However, Loma often found the target with his jab and was able to nail the Cuban a few times with straight lefts and triple uppercuts. They weren't massive shots but they were effective.
Offensively, the Cuban was anemic and failed to land more than three punches in any of the six rounds. Lomachenko’s size, exemplary footwork, peppering offensives and overall ring generalship were simply more than Rigondeaux could handle.
Vasyl Lomachenko might be one of the best fighters ever. He's that good.
He simply didn't allow Rigondeaux to get set and throw combinations. And Vasyl, when he wasn't moving, appeared to always be peppering quick shots to Rigo's face. They weren't zingers but were enough to keep Rigondeaux from mounting an attack.
- Result: Lomachenko TKO 7 Rigondeaux
- Division: Super Featherweight
- Weights: Vasyl Lomachenko 129 lbs, Guillermo Rigondeaux 128¼
- Location: Madison Square Garden Theater, New York, New York, USA
- Referee: Steve Willis
- Judges: Steve Weisfeld, Glenn Feldman and Kevin Morgan
- Promoter: Bob Arum (Top Rank)
- Aired On: ESPN, BoxNation (Main Event)
- Title: WBO (4th defense by Lomachenko)
Lomachenko vs Rigondeaux was also marred by clinches and fouls, mostly by Rigondeaux, which also left a sour taste in the mouths of fans who expected to see artistry at its best.
“It was a win, but it was not a big win for me,” Lomachenko said. “I adjusted to his style. I adjusted to his low blows. He’s an excellent, excellent fighter, but I had the skills to win.”
Lomachenko vs Rigondeaux stats and facts
Total Punches Thrown/Landed
Lomachenko 55/339 (16.2%)
Rigondeaux 15/78 (8.4%)
Lomachenko 32/199 (16.1 %)
Rigondeaux 10/114 (8.8 %)
Lomachenko 23/149 (16.4%)
Rigondeaux 5/64 (7.8 %)
- Ages: Rigondeaux - 37, Lomachenko - 30
- First ever: Fight matched up between two boxers who are both two-time Olympic Gold medal winners.
- For the fourth time in a row: A Lomachenko opponent quit on his stool. After the fight, Loma jokingly stated he might change his name to No-Mas-Chenko
- In Round 1: The fighters landed a combined 4 shots (2 apiece)
- Guillermo Rigondeaux moved up two weight divisions to fight Vasyl Lomachenko.
- Lomachenko's best stanza was Round 4; He out-landed Rigo 16-3.
- Vasyl Lomachenko entered as The Ring Magazine #1, BoxRec #1 (super featherweight)
- Guillermo Rigondeaux entered as The Ring Magazine #1, BoxRec #2 (super bantamweight)
- By contract: Neither fighter could weigh more 138 pounds at 9 AM on the day of the fight; Lomachenko weighed 137.4 pounds and Rigondeaux 130 pounds
- Purses: Lomachenko pocketed a guaranteed $1.2 Million while Rigondeaux earned a guaranteed $400,000 (explanation of purse difference)
- Injury: Rigondeaux wasn't gracious in defeat, citing his injury was to blame. Many believe he didn't give Lomachenko enough credit
- Left or right?: Prior to retiring, Rigondeaux, after Round 6, appeared to motion to his trainer that he'd hurt his right hand. But after the fight, he insisted he hurt his left This lead some to question if he'd hurt either hand at all.
- One point: After warnings for clinching, Rigodeaux lost a point in Round 5
- Size matters: Vasyl stated his size advantage was too much for the Cuban and insisted Rigo was still the king of the 122-pound division
- Odds: Not surprisingly, Lomachenko was the clear - but not dominant - favorite. As of December 6, Bovada had the Ukrainian at -350 while the Cuban sits at +265. Hence, a successful $350 wager on Vasyl would have yielded $100 while a successful $100 bet on Rigo would have generated $265.