Breaking down Vasyl Lomachenko

The opponent

Romulo Koasicha (red and green trunks) is the prototypical Mexican boxer. He has a powerful left hook and the sort of hard nosed toughness that is ingrained in them from the get go. He tends to like to pressure and get inside so he can dig his hooks and outwork his opponents. We’re going to just call him Rome for short.

Vasyl Lomachenko

This two time gold medalist is one of the most interesting fighters in the game today. He is incredibly fast, he uses footwork that can only be described as hyperactive, throws tons of punches and is quite good on defense and a lefty as well. Here we see him slip a right hand lead from Rome before weaving in to push Rome back to the ropes where Rome throws a jab, Vasyl parries the first away with his lead before taking a jab to the body, as Rome is throwing Vasyl steps in and cracks him with a hard left hand to the body. Rome tries to flurry but Vasyl smartly gives ground and defends. Notice he keeps his right hand low when retreating it to stop rome’s left hook to the body.

Constant lead foot dominance and defensive adjustments

Watch the feet here Loma is constantly looking to establish lead foot dominance over his opponent (more on that here 3rd gif down) He throws another left hand to the body before stepping in to smother the right hand, then ducks under the left hook.

Playing with distance

Vasyl is constantly moving in and out trying to confuse his opponents judgement of distance by frequently changing it. Watch the feet, first he takes a half step forward and Rome steps back, He takes a step back and when Rome steps forward he takes a big step forward to establish lead foot dominance and lands another hard left hand to the body. Rome circles out and Vasyl follows. Rome throws a jab and Vasyl ducks and parries it with his lead hand to land yet another body shot.

Active defense and foot work

When you attack him, Vasyl is always adjusting. Rome jabs and Vasyl moves his head to the outside (away from Rome’s right hand) while simultaneously lifting his left very to block the follow up right. He then shifts his weight back and to his left away from the left hook, taking the sting off it. When Rome starts throwing his left hook to the body Vasyl walks to his left away from it and starts jabbing before changing directions to avoid another jab.

Attacking from the sides

Rome closes the distance with his jab and Vasyl steps to his left while landing a left hook and Rome charges right past him. But then when the men reset Loma starts working his own jab to make Rome cover up before taking a big pivoting step off to Rome’s left side. By doing this he opens up a perfect angle for his own powerful left hook. Beautiful boxing.

Rome closes the distance with his jab and Vasyl steps to his left while landing a left hook and Rome charges right past him. But then when the men reset Loma starts working his own jab to make Rome cover up before taking a big pivoting step off to Rome’s left side. By doing this he opens up a perfect angle for his own powerful left hook. Beautiful boxing.

Another angle. Pun intended.

More angles and controlling your opponent

Again Vasyl steps around Rome to land a couple of straight punches from the side. He throws a couple of hooks which Rome smartly ducks underneath before trying to circle away from the ropes. Vasyl uses beautiful footwork to cut off the ring and trap Rome on the ropes. Vasyl uses a sticky hook(more on this later), keeping it on the back of Rome’s neck instead of pulling it back preventing him from mounting any kind of offense before throwing a flurry of uppercuts as Rome pulls his head back up. His grappling smothered Rome’s offense and opened up his own.

On some Spiderman shit

This is the real beauty of Vasyl Lomachenko. When he gets you to the ropes and can truly open up he is always taking different angles and keeps his opponents trapped. He puts his hands down which does a couple of things, because all of the punches he throws come up from the hips many times the opponent cannot see them coming, and any fighter will tell you it’s the ones you don’t see coming that hurt you. It also makes it much easier to move your head and with out compromising your balence. Try it yourself, put your hands by your face and lean over to either side as far as you can, now try it with your hands down. Fuckin’ weird right? A few boxers made use of this as it is a pretty risky strategy but those who did were some of the best. Roy Jones, Muhammad Ali, and Nasim Hamed just to name a few.

Shade of Pacquaio and Toney

Vasyl has Rome trapped in the corner here and is going in on him. He throws the 1-2 to get Rome to cover up which opens up a hard right hook down to the body as he defends his face. He jabs and uses one of Manny’s favorite techniques, the double straight left hand. By throwing the first one he smashes open a hole in his opponents high guard and the second one finds it’s way through the opening cracking Rome dead in the face. Rome step forward out of the corner to throw a left hook which Vasyl weaves underneath to his right which opens up the angle for the uppercut like James Toney loved to do so much. Love the little nod at the end.

Stance switching to open up offense

Vasyl again is trying to push Rome back into the ropes. Rome circles out to his left to get away but Loma is one step ahead. He opens up with yet another 1-2 to get Rome to cover up before stepping his left foot forward then off at angle to line up his now more powerful right uppercut in between Rome’s gloves. This is another very rare thing for a fighter to do because if you get hit in that split second when you have your feet squared up your are probably going to lose your balance and get knocked down. It’s another of these Risk/Reward moves that Loma seems to love so much.

Going in, in style

He opens up with a classic 1-2 ,lead hook. The 1-2 makes Rome try to narrow the opening in front of his face opening the angle for Vasyl’s right hook around the side. He starts stepping around at angles to open up his hooks and uppercuts. He uses those sticky hooks again to keep Rome in place as he manuvers around him landing his punches. Vasyl starts showing off here winding up his punches. This is less risky than you might think because if your opponent tries to throw as you are windmilling your lead hand can intercept anything they might throw with a short straight jab. On the other hand (LOL) if your opponent doesn’t attack they are left waiting to try and time a power punch which can come at any point during the wind mill.

Block removal

DO NOT DO THIS TO A GUY WHO IS HITTING BACK! This is a great way to try and finish a passive opponent but it totally opens up Rome’s left hook to both the head and body.Rome is throwing back a bit here so Vasyl needs to make him cover back up before he can try to use more block removal. He throws a three punch combo before trying it again connecting with a right hook, then a left hook. This is a far safer way of attempting to use this technique.

The knockout

After several rounds of beating the ever-loving shit out of Rome, Vasyl realizes that it may not be worth it trying to crack this kid’s chin. So he switches levels and decides to batter him straight left hands to the body. Rome tries to circle out and leans forward to try and keep distance between Vasyl and his body but in doing so he gives up the big left hook to the liver that finished him.
Once again I want to thank anybody who has read this far. Lomachenko is really a special talent, capable of doing beautiful things in that ring. His movement is unlike anybody else in the game right now. The only person I can think of to compare to him is UFC fighter Dominick Cruz. His speed, footwork and intelligence have created a fighter that is both fundamentally sound and incredibly creative and beautiful to watch. I’m just going to say this right now, I would kill any three of you to watch this man get in the ring with Guillermo Rigondeaux. No offense.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s