Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Anthony Crolla
|Date & Time||Friday April 12, 2019, 11:30 PM (EDT)|
Los Angeles, California
The Line: Lomachenko -6825 / Crolla +3675 -- Over/Under: 9.5
Vasyl Lomachenko and Anthony Crolla fight Friday at the Staples Center for the World Boxing Association Super World Lightweight Title.
Vasyl Lomachenko enters this fight with a 12-1 record that includes nine knockouts. Lomachenko has won each of his last 11 fights, and he’s coming off a December win over Jose Pedraza. Lomachenko will defend his belt fo a second straight fight and is coming off his first decision win since his 2014 bout against Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo. Lomachenko landed 158 power punches over the course of 12 rounds and was comfortably in the lead throughout the fight, but he couldn’t produce a knockout, ending his finish streak at eight in a row. Lomachenko is a 31-year-old southpaw who stands at 5’7” and has a 65-inch reach. Lomachenko is one of the best technical fighters in the sport with ridiculous footwork and defense, so his opponents have a tough time landing consistently and can get frustrated and lose confidence over the course of a bout. Lomachenko has quick hands offensively, puts combinations together nicely and clearly has power with 69 percent of his fights ending in knockout. For somebody who came up through the olympic ranks and had some doubters after losing his second professional fight, Lomachenko has really settled in as one of the most balanced fighters in the sport and somebody who is in the conversation as best pound-for-pound. This will be Lomachenko’s third career fight in California.
Anthony Crolla enters this fight with a 34-6-3 record that includes 13 knockouts. Crolla has won five of his last seven fights, and he’s coming off a November win over Daud Yordan. Crolla has followed up back-to-back losses with three straight wins and is coming off a comfortable decision victory where he outworked the best boxer from Indonesia. Crolla is 32 years old, stands at 5’8”, has a 67-inch reach and an orthodox stance. Crolla doesn’t have a ton of punching power, but he’s accurate, has a great work rate and works behind his jab well. Crolla has produced just four finishes in his last 13 fights and hasn’t had a knockout since his 2016 bout against Ismael Barroso. Crolla has a pressure style to him, as he’s always coming forward, looking to box on the inside and enjoys using his right hook on counters. Crolla also has a proven chin considering he’s lost six times and only one of those losses was a finish. Crolla may not be the best the UK has to offer, but he stays busy and can steal fights on the cards if his opponent doesn’t match his energy. This will be Crolla’s second career fight in the United States.
Crolla can make this a competitive fight if he brings his usual energy to the ring and lets his hands go. Crolla also has a size advantage over Lomachenko, which certainly doesn’t hurt the case for an upset. Crolla can close the ring off and box Lomachenko from the inside, possibly landing a strong power punch that makes the champ uncomfortable. Unfortunately, Crolla hasn’t been in the ring with somebody like Lomachenko and he doesn’t have the power in his hands that give him a punchers chance. Lomachenko is too good defensively to trade punches all night and Crolla doesn’t it in him to land that one punch that could shock the world. Lomachenko should also be eager to finish this fight given how his last fight went down and to keep your name in the p4p conversation, you have to finish lesser opponents. This is simply a few classes out of Crolla’s league.
Lomachenko should win this bout by knockout, and taking the under 9.5 rounds is certainly a lot more valuable than laying this insane ML or even a KO/TKO prop. Seven of Lomachenko's nine finishes have been decided in the ninth round or earlier.