Vasiliy Lomachenko Underwent Surgery on Shoulder Injury After Teofimo Lopez Loss

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 21, 2020

FILE - In this April 12, 2019, file photo, Vasiliy Lomachenko, left, from Ukraine, hits Anthony Crolla, from Britain, during a WBA and WBO lightweight title boxing match in Los Angeles. In ordinary times Vasiliy Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez would be the fight of the fall, a lightweight title match about as compelling as it gets in the boxing world these days. Instead of a big crowd, the only fans at the MGM Grand conference center will be a few hundred sponsors and first responders with special invites. And, instead of pay-per-view, the fight will be televised live on ESPN, guaranteeing a larger audience than a pay-per-view even if the money isn’t nearly the same. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
Damian Dovarganes/Associated Press

Vasiliy Lomachenko underwent shoulder surgery Monday after his recent loss Teofimo Lopez, the boxer's manager Egis Klimas told Steve Kim of ESPN.

Lomachenko had previously dealt with pain in his shoulder at least six weeks before Saturday's fight and then suffered an injury to the spot in the second round of the eventual loss. The 32-year-old fought well in the second half of the fight, but Lopez came away with the win by unanimous decision, securing the WBC, WBO and WBA titles in the process. 

Even with the loss marking Lomachenko's first defeat since 2014, his camp doesn't want to blame the injury.

"We didn't want to look like we were looking for excuses or something," Klimas said.

Still, he received two injections for the pain over the past two months and his father, Anatoly, wanted the fighter to drop out of the fight.

Klimas said the surgery will keep him out until at least mid-January when he can resume training.

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When healthy, Lomachenko remains one of the biggest stars in the sport. He had been No. 1 in ESPN's pound-for-pound rankings earlier in the year while even after his latest loss, Brian Campbell of CBS Sports rated him as the No. 5 fighter in the world.

The time off for rehab could provide time to evaluate his next move, whether that will be a rematch with Lopez or changing weight classes or something else.