By MARCUS HONDRO, Digitaljournal.com
Bob Arum is getting close to his 85th birthday so perhaps we should excuse him if he embraces hyperbole a little more than even boxing promoters normally do. But comparing a rising fighter, relatively untested professionally, to Muhammad Ali?
That’s what Arum, the CEO of Top Rank Boxing, did last week at a press conference days after seeing his fighter, the 28-year-old Ukrainian Vasyl Lomachenko, easily handle Roman Martinez in a bout at Madison Square Gardens. The two-time Olympic gold-medalist Lomachenko knocked Martinez out to move his pro record to 6-1 (4 KOs).
Arum was asked about another of his fighters, undefeated Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford (28-0, 20 KOs) also 28, who has a HBO-PPV fight July 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas against Viktor Postol, also undefeated at 28-0 (12 KOs). It’s a unification fight with the welterweight (140 pound) division champ to be crowned and Arum saw fit to bring up Lomachenko when talking about Crawford.
“I was sure if Crawford gets by Postol, he’ll be the next big thing in boxing,” Arum told media. “But after seeing Lomachenko on Saturday, maybe I have No. 1 and No. 1A.”