BOXING

Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Masayoshi Nakatani: odds and predictions

The Ukrainian superstar is set to return to the ring after his defeat to Teófimo López last October. He will now face the Japanese boxer Masayoshi Nakatani.

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Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Masayoshi Nakatani: odds and predictions

Eight months later, he is back. Future Hall of Famer Vasiliy Lomachenko (14-2, 10 KOs) will make his long-awaited return to the ring on Saturday at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas against Masayoshi Nakatani (19-1, 13 KOs).

Instead of taking a warm-up fight as most fighters do when facing a defeat, The Matrix preferred to fight one of the best in the 135-pound division.

After his surprising defeat to the American Teófimo López, who cemented his status as a young star after the fight, there was a lot of uncertainty around ‘Loma’, but the two-time Olympic gold medalist decided to come back to the fight game for another title shot.

Lomachenko is the heavy favorite coming into the fight against Nakatani, whose only loss came against López. The Ukrainian’s superior skill, speed, timing and footwork should prove too much for the Asian fighter, although Nakatani’s height and reach could pose a threat to the former champion.

Although there are no belts on the line, the Ukrainian fighter badly needs to win the bout in impressive style if he wants to have another title shot straight away.

Lomachenko vs Nakatani: odds and predictions

The odds on the bout have the massive favorite Lomachenko at -1600 and Nakatani at +700.

Before losing his WBA, IBF and WBO belts to López by unanimous decision, Lomachenko outpointed Luke Campbell in 2019 in London.

Meanwhile, Nakatani has stopped four of his last five opponents. In his last fight, he won against Félix Verdejo on 12 December 2020 by technical knockout in the 9th round at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas. He was a 3/1 (+300) underdog going into the fight.