A star was born on Wednesday night, when Tefimo LaPage made his huge promise, a two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time champion from Ukraine, surprisingly considered the best pound-for-pound in boxing.
The 23-year-old dominated the first half of the much-anticipated lightweight title consolidation fight at the Brooklyn MGM Grand Conference Center, then turned off the late-round cheer and showed the champions the final kick to the IBF, WBA and the consolidating 135 lbs. Three judges on the ringside were in favor of Lapage by scores of 119-109, 117-111 and 116-112. (To the Guardian it was 116-112))
LaPage, who captured the IBF’s lightweight championship version with a compromise knockout by Richard Comey in December and left as a 3-1 underdog on Saturday, was frustrated not by his indomitable strength, but by outboxing the most tech-savvy fighter in the sport. A result marked by virtually no one.
“Lots of people were talking high about him and I was expecting more,” LaPage said. “Basic. It was quite basic, to be honest. Maybe it did the 14-month pruning it did, I don’t know. But I had 10 months off, but why is that important? I’ve fought the guy whose everyone says pound-for-pound (best).
Lomachenko, a former world champion in featherweight and junior lightweight, took the opportunity to take a slow ride, the only flickers of weakness to come after moving to lightweight. The 32-year-old Southpati poked the first four rounds with a very small amount, the content of measuring the task while sitting in front of him content lapage was able to easily round with his opponent with an uninterrupted diet and touching his opponent with direct head and body rights.
As the fight progressed to the middle round, Lomachenko waited for a mistake that never came to pass and was forced to change his tactics as his face began to swell from the accumulation of LaPage’s injury. After a warning from referee Russell Mora to lead with a header, Lomachenko burst into life in the middle of the eighth and landed in a three-punch combination with the floor of his right hand. After joining the first seven combined 31 scouts, he made 19 of 38 punches, but in the end the fight was on.
Sensing Lopez couldn’t cope with that pressure, Lomachenko got up to the ninth position and kept shaking hands. He rocked Lopez in the mix early in the round but the junior champion grabbed his field and Lomachenko came back with a big hand through the defender. By the eleventh date, Lomachenko was ing on the penalty and the momentum was clearly building in his favor, although he waited too long to remove the switch.
Knowing that Lomechenko probably needed a knock-out to win the 12th entry, LaPage’s father and coach asked his son to go from range to box. However, Lepez ignored the advice and made it to the final round in a clear attempt to knock out. Throughout the final three minutes, he beat Lomachenko with a straight right and a big hand. Referee Lomachenko called for action in the final seconds after the accidental head hit Lopez’s right eye over the right eye, and by then the result had been nothing more than missed.
“I’m a warrior,” LaPage said when asked why he ignored his father’s advice. “I got to dig deeper. I knew he was coming. I don’t know if they put him on the scorecard and I like to fight. I can do it too, I don’t care, man. I have to give one a take. This is what the real champion does. I have found a way to win. ”
Lumpenko was tied for 141 out of 321 punches, compared to 183 for Lapage, according to Compubbox’s punch statistics.
“I think in the first half of the fight, he scored a lot more goals than I did,” Lomachenko said through a translator. “But in the second half of the fight, I took it and I was better. I want to go home and review the fight to see. I can’t comment too much on it right now. However, I certainly do not agree with the scorecard. ”
He added: “At the moment I think (I won the fight). But the fruit is the fruit. I won’t argue right now. “
LaPaz then claimed it was a victory for the younger generation, who put themselves at the head of a high-profile class including Shodhur Stevenson, Jarron ‘Boots’ Ennis and David Benavidez.
“It’s the new generation,” he said. “What we are bringing back to the old school. Fight the best and you put pressure on it. I’m not here to pick and choose who I want to fight because I want to defend my title and keep that ‘o’. No and now, who knows if my stats are going to go up after this.
“Everyone wants to be like Mayweather. To be like Mayweather, you can be like a friendly boy first. You go to fight the boy where people don’t think you will win. You were able to fight against the likes of these undefeated guys and it’s a good fight to create the kind of million people want to make. “
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