We find this fight hard to gauge because they both possess exceptional skill. To the best of our ability, we will offer our prediction.
Rigondeaux fights at super bantamweight (up to 122lbs) and was confirmed to have an amateur record of 463-12. He was the 2000 Olympic Bantamweight Gold Medalist and 2004 Olympic Bantamweight Gold Medalist. For the past half-year, Rigondeaux has been calling out Lomachenko in hopes for a match against a real (for him) competitor.
Lomachenko fights at super featherweight (up to 130) and has claimed an amateur record of 396-1. He was the 2008 Olympic Featherweight Gold Medalist and 2012 Olympic Lightweight Gold Medalist. For the past few months, Lomachenko has expressed the most interest in fighting hot prospect Gervonta Davis and formidable and undefeated boxer Mikey Garcia.
Experts’ Predictions (as of September, 2017)
Teddy Atlas (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m_F1-LujnC4)
“I like Lomachenko. Rigondeaux is calm enough, accurate enough, patient enough, powerful enough to maybe place a punch at the right time.”
Robert Garcia (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBOKv2FH1iQ)
“At 130, I think [Rigo] is too small. He’s got skills but he’s too small.”
Max Kellerman 1 year ago (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18DtzYgTBNw)
“[Lomachenko is] a naturally, significantly bigger guy than Rigondeaux…and also he might be better! Lomachenko’s a beast.”
We have to say that we think it is likely Lomachenko will win. Although Rigondeaux is our favorite boxer and has a good chance at beating him, Lomachenko has too many advantages (weight/height, near-same skill, bigger skill set, aggressiveness, momentum, etc.) against Rigondeaux. However, Rigondeaux may be able to force Lomachenko to fight his fight and neutralize the Ukranian (just like he did Donaire). We aren’t sure how fighting at a higher weight class will affect Rigondeaux, but he certainly has the power to at least prevent Lomachenko from walking through his punches. Both fighters are very good at setting the pace and finding their opponents’ weaknesses; we don’t expect the fight to be a shutout, even though each fighter has been able to pull it off against top guys. We do expect the fight to go to a decision (probably for Lomachenko) but would love to see Rigondeaux prove us wrong.
Lomachenko was able to neutralize Rigondeaux’s offense. Gaining advantageous positions while Rigondeaux defended, Lomachenko proved too much for Rigondeaux. However, Rigondeux reported that he suffered a hand injury during the second round.
“I lost, no excuses, I injured the top of my left hand in the second round. He’s a very technical fighter. He’s explosive. I’m gonna come back because that’s what I do. The weight was not a factor in this fight. It was the injury to my hand.” – Guillermo Rigondeaux, 2017
Rigondeaux retired at the end of round 6. Lomachenko would earn the alias “Nomaschenko” because Rigondeaux was the fourth of Lomachenko’s opponents to retire on their own or on their behalf.