Lightweight world champions Vasyl Lomachenko (11-1, 9 KOs) and Jose Pedraza (25-1, 12 KOs) have officially been scheduled for a title unification match on December 8th on ESPN. In the fight Lomachenko will be defending his WBA title while Pedraza will defend his WBO belt. Ring TV reports the fight will be held at New York’s Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden.
While this fight was originally expected to be held on Dec. 1, Top Rank promotions instead opted to push it back a week so they can piggyback off the Heisman Trophy presentation on ESPN, which they believe will give their show a significant ratings boost.
Lomachenko, 29, is most recently coming off a stoppage win over Jorge Linares in May, his first venture in the lightweight division. Lomachenko overcame a flash knockdown in that fight to otherwise batter Linares into submission.
Meanwhile Pedraza, 29, is coming off the biggest win of his career when he beat Ray Beltran in August to become a lightweight world champion. That win not only earned him a title belt but also propelled him into another prime time headlining event.
Lomachenko will enter this fight as the significant favorite to win this title unification, particularly seeing as many rate him as the top pound-for-pound fighter in the sport right now. He’s displayed a boxing brilliance we haven’t seen in some time and talent-wise is head-and-shoulders above Pedraza (which is not to say Pedraza is a bum or anything like that). But this is why they fight the fights. We’ll see on Dec. 8th....