Devin Haney W12 Vasiliy Lomachenko: A Decision Destined To Be Debated For A Long Time

By James Slater - 05/21/2023 - Comments

It might not reach the fierce and long-lived argumentative level of Sugar Ray Leonard W12 Marvelous Marvin Hagler, but last night’s decision – Devin Haney W12 Vasiliy Lomachenko – may well prove to be one of the most debated world title decisions over the coming months, maybe longer. As soon as the official scores were read out in Las Vegas: 116-112, 115-113, 115-113, all for defending lightweight champion Haney, the arguments began.

Fans, experts, fellow fighters, they’re all about as split down the middle as can be imagined right now when it comes to who won last night’s fight; a brilliant, hugely highly skilled boxing match that delighted lovers of The Sweet Science. For every person that feels Haney deserved a close win, you can find another, equally passionate person who says the remarkable 35 year old from Ukraine deserved a close decision. And so it is likely to go on.

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The word “robbery” is too strong here, the “R” word often bandied around in a far too casual manner, yet some people do feel Loma was the victim of a crime. Others feel 24 year old Haney got what he deserved with that unanimous decision. Both boxers boxed brilliantly at times, with Haney doing his best work during the first half of the fight, and with Loma really coming on strong in the second half of the fight, before Haney finished strong in the final session.

For lovers of punch-stat numbers, Loma scored with more – this at 124 punches landed to Haney’s 110. As for the three wise men sat at ringside, after six completed rounds, one judge had the fight level, while the other two had Haney ahead, by 2 points and by four points, respectively.

Loma’s winning of The Championship rounds, with two of the three judges giving Loma rounds ten and 11, wasn’t enough for the challenger, with Haney winning the final round on all three cards.

After the fight, and to repeat, it was an excellent one, certainly one we could stand seeing again, Loma was sure he’d won. Afterwards, in his dressing room, Lomachenko broke down in tears.

“People saw what happened,” a distraught Lomachenko said, clearly indicating how the people saw him win the fight. But this is where we are, at debating point. And to repeat, this debate may not end for some time.

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Who do YOU think won the fight?

Will there be a rematch? It seems doubtful, as Haney, 30-0(15) has already said he will stay at lightweight for fights with Shakur Stevenson and Tank Davis, these two fights uppermost on his current radar. So where does this leave Lomachenko, 17-3(11)? Has anyone ever decisively beaten Loma? No, they have not. A remarkable fighter, Loma showed last night that he has plenty left at the highest level. That said, it’s tough to see where he goes from here, so truly devastated he seems to be after last night’s debatable defeat.

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