Former unified titleholder Vasiliy Lomachenko sits down with Marcos Villegas of Fight Hub TV to discuss why he’s fighting Devin Haney now as opposed to a few years ago, and why he can’t fathom Haney’s claims of fighting dirty. Check out some of what Lomachenko had to say below.
Loma on how he feels going into this fight compared to when he fought Teofimo Lopez
“Look, right now it’s a different style and it’s 100% a different motivation because when I fought with Lopez I was a world champion, three times...right now I’m focusing 100%, right now I’m preparing 100% like always, but right now it looks like: you wake up with this dream, you go to bed with this dream, you live everyday only with this goal in your head.”
On fighting Haney now instead of four years ago
“We have a little bit two different story, because when he asked me about fight he asked when he was without a belt. I hold three belts and I chase my dream and I had a chance to take another belt. But right now situation, (in his contract) he don’t have a choice. In official, he need to give me this chance because when he signed, in the contract he was 100% if he win belts, then he go in Australia and take four belts — in the contract that he signed it was a part where he need to give me this chance.
“So that’s why. This is a real story. So it’s not I ask him ‘hey, give me please this chance, give me this chance’, it was official.”
On if he’s annoyed by Haney calling him a dirty fighter
“No, absolutely not, it’s not bother me. I know who I am and I know what I can, and I think always in my boxing career, I think I always was a gentleman. So I don’t know. I can’t comment (on) his words. Maybe you ask him why he say it.
[Marcos Villegas then relates Haney’s claims of punching on the break]
“But it’s in the rule,” Lomachenko responds. “But it’s normal, then you stay in the clinch and work and then when the referee say something you need to react. But if he stay quiet and don’t say nothing, I need still continue working. It doesn’t matter, inside, outside, clinch, no clinch, I still work. Yes? Is it in rule?! So I don’t understand.
“Maybe he need to read the rules, maybe he need to study a little bit the rules, maybe. I don’t know.”
On if he truly believes Haney is on his skill level
“I don’t know. It’s just we have a theory and we have practice, and I love more practice than theory because when you practice you can feel it, and you can answer after that all questions on the theory...maybe he’s faster, maybe he’s bigger, maybe he’s stronger, but it’s not only this part (in) game of boxing. We have experience, we have IQ, and of course, motivation.”