Join Bloody Elbow for live coverage of Saturday night’s Top Rank Boxing on ESPN telecast, as reigning WBA lightweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko (11-1, 9 KOs) takes on WBO lightweight champion Jose Pedraza (25-1, 12 KOs) in a unification bout that will see the winner leave with two of the four major belts in that division. Lomachenko is a heavy favorite and widely considered the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world.
We will have round-by-round updates of Lomachenko vs. Pedraza, with the ESPN broadcast beginning at 9 PM ET/6 PM PT from MSG Theater in New York. The undercard features an intriguing junior featherweight title bout between WBO champion Isaac Dogboe (20-0, 14 KOs) and Emanuel Navarrete (25-1, 22 KOs), while outstanding lightweight prospect Teofimo Lopez (10-0, 8 KOs) takes on veteran gatekeeper Mason Menard (34-3, 24 KOs) in another step up in competition for the rising star.
Lomachenko vs. Pedraza should begin somewhere around 10:30 PM ET/7:30 PM PT, and it shouldn’t run into the UFC 231 title fights.
Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Jose Pedraza - For Lomachenko’s WBA and Pedraza’s WBO Lightweight world titles (12 Rounds)
Round 1 - Pedraza going forward to start things. Jabs to the body. Lomachenko not doing much in the opening minute. This is a feel-out round, to say the least. Straight left by Lomachenko. Right hand by Pedraza. Hard counter left hand by Lomachenko. Goes to the body now. Sneaky right hook by Lomachenko. They trade jabs to end the round. 10-9 Lomachenko.
Round 2 - Pedraza with a blocked 1-2. Lands a jab. Lomachenko with a southpaw jab. He eats a body shot from Pedraza. Right hook by Lomachenko. Just off-target on the left hand is Lomachenko. Hard lead left by Loma! Jab by Lomachenko. Pedraza with a left hook. Pedraza with a short combo to the body. 20-18 Lomachenko.
Round 3 - They each land a shot in a close exchange. Pedraza stick in a jab and then another. Lomachenko scores his own jab. Body shot by Vasyl. A straight left by Lomachenko. Pedraza with a straight right that misses. Four-punch combo by Loma and that’s lightning quick! Pedraza with some goody body work towards the end but he gets clipped before the round ends. 30-27 Lomachenko.
Round 4 - Good right hand by Pedraza. He’s switching southpaw. Lomachenko jabs twice and lands a left hand. A jab backs Pedraza backward and Lomachenko goes to work briefly. Then goes downstairs with a jab to the body. Pedraza misses with a right hook. Pedraza throwing a lot of punches here but most are missing. Lomachenko not throwing the right hook at all. Doubles up the jab with 20 seconds to go. Nice left by Pedraza but a firmer one by Loma, and another one. 40-36 Lomachenko.
Round 5 - Pedraza connects on a jab from orthodox. Short right by Lomachenko. Pedraza attacks the body. Straight left by Lomachenko. Good counter right hook by Lomachenko. Two right hooks by Lomachenko. Nice counter right by Pedraza and a couple of shots land upstairs for the WBO champ. Hard body shot by Pedraza. Pedraza with the body shot. Lomachenko with a flurry and Pedraza answers back. Might be Pedraza’s best round. 49-46 Lomachenko.
Round 6 - Right hook by Lomachenko. Pedraza sweeps a right to the body. Big left by Loma and a right hook! Pedraza’s two-punch combo is blocked. Good left by Loma and he tees off with another shot as Pedraza is against the ropes. Digging body shot by Pedraza but he eats a jab. Solid body shot by Lomachenko. Pedraza going aggressively to the body again late in the round. 59-55 Lomachenko.
Round 7 - Pedraza jabs to the head and body. Body shot by Lomachenko as he chases Pedraza. Good right hand by Lomachenko. Two uppercuts by Lomachenko connect. Three-punch combo by Lomachenko. Pedraza hits low with his own combo. Loma sticks the jab out. Quick-fire jab by Lomachenko, who then blocked the left hook. Loma digs the body as they exchange in the middle of the ring. 69-64 Lomachenko.
Round 8 - Loma leaps in with a straight left. Gets him again. Great body shots by Pedraza after taking a left hand upstairs. uppercut by Lomachenko and a right hand. body shot and left upstairs. Pedraza answers with a jab and left hook. Good body shot by Loma. A rare clinch and Loma pushes Pedraza down. Pedraza switches to southpaw again. Good overhand left and right by Lomachenko! 79-73 Lomachenko.
Round 9 - Loma darts in with a right hook. Pedraza with a right hand that thuds off Loma’s head. Lomachenko pressuring and connecting with a left. Loma is warned for pushing Pedraza’s head down. Counter left and a stiff jab by Lomachenko. Lomachenko uncorking big shots and Pedraza is trying to return fire. Uppercut rocks Pedraza backwards. Big left hand by Lomachenko! His best round yet. 89-82 Lomachenko.
Round 10 - Counter right by Loma. Good combo by Lomachenko snaps Pedraza’s head around. Vicious body shot by Pedraza but Loma keeps coming forward. Pops his head back with a jab. Right hand by Pedraza is there, too. Back to the body by Pedraza. The Puerto Rican lands a counter left. Lomachenko with a late charge but I think Pedraza won that round. 98-92 Lomachenko.
Round 11 - Slow start to the penultimate round until Lomachenko cracks Pedraza with a left hand. Pedraza is hurt! Lomachenko teeing off with punches in bunches! Pedraza trying to survive as Lomachenko pours on devastating shots! Body shot! Head shot! Huge uppercut by Loma in the clinch. Another uppercut! WOW! Pedraza finally goes down! Count is at 9 and he beats it. Twenty seconds left. Body shot puts Pedraza! Gets up at 9 again! He survives the round. 108-99 Lomachenko.
Round 12 - Pedraza going for it and trying to be aggressive. Two-punch combo by Lomachenko. Uppercut and a jab to the body. Pedraza gets tagged again. Loma is going off again. Body shot and punch upstairs by Lomachenko. Pedraza with a jab. Hard left by Lomachenko and an uppercut! Pedraza retreating. Pedraza going to the body. Lomachenko tags Pedraza and then he’s held and put on a knee. No knockdown. Ten seconds to go. Pedraza will survive the fight. 118-108 Lomachenko.
Official result - Vasyl Lomachenko def. Jose Pedraza by unanimous decision (119-107, 117-109, 117-109) to become the unified WBA and WBO lightweight champion
Emanuel Navarrete def. Isaac Dogboe by unanimous decision (115-113, 116-112, 116-112) to win the WBO Junior Featherweight title - 12 Rounds
Teofimo Lopez def. Mason Menard by KO, :44 of round 1 (Lightweight - 10 Rounds)