He’s nicknamed “The Matrix” or “Hi-Tech” because of the way he’s able to move and glide across the ring, not just with knockout intent, but also with technical precision and skill mastery. It’s as if he’s in his own world, manipulating the space-time continuum, and can predict an opponent’s moves before he makes them.
Pound-for-pound great and multiple-division world champion Vasyl Lomachenko is truly a one-of-a-kind boxer, and one of the most talented fighters in any era of the sport. He’s only had 15 professional fights so far in his career, including 14 victories (10 KO’s) and only one defeat, but he’s already won world titles at featherweight, super featherweight, and lightweight.
Perhaps it’s all the time he spent dominating the amateur ranks, where he captured gold medals at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and the 2021 Olympic Games in London, also winning gold medals at the 2009 and 2011 World Championships. Lomachenko’s extensive amateur career, no doubt, set him up for immense success as a professional.
Or maybe his success is simply due to his unique style, which Lomachenko has honed for years in the boxing gym under the tutelage of his father, who taught him how to box at a young age.
No matter the reason, Lomachenko is one of the most prolific boxing world champions in the world today, and arguably the best fighter in the world right now. Fans who want a better grasp at Lomachenko’s slick boxing style need look no further. We’ve taken the time to break down some of the aspects of his game here for you.
Today, Evolve Daily shares five unique characteristics of Vasyl Lomachenko’s boxing style.
1) The dance of destruction
One of the most distinct qualities Lomachenko possesses in the ring is his ability to maneuver in and around his opponents’ space with incredible ease. Through a combination of fight intelligence and impeccable footwork, Lomachenko can get to any spot in the ring, basically whenever he wants.
For Lomachenko, footwork is second nature to him. He’s mastered the ebb and flow of offense and defense in boxing. He knows exactly when to shuffle forward, when to retreat, and when to move side to side. This is extremely frustrating for anyone in the ring with him.
— Evolve MMA (@EvolveMMA) May 31, 2020
Lomachenko first learned how to box from his father, Anatoly, who started training him at a young age. Anatoly was a boxer-turned-coach himself. According to Top Rank head Bob Arum, who promotes Lomachenko, Anatoly didn’t let his son train boxing until he attended traditional Ukrainian dance classes, and learned gymnastics. Once his son gained the right amount of athleticism, it was only then that Anatoly allowed him to get in the ring.
Those Ukrainian dance lessons definitely paid off, and his skills manifested in his boxing footwork, creating a distinctive dance of destruction in the ring that only Lomachenko can offer.
2) Coordination and reflexes
In addition to his incredible footwork, Lomachenko also possesses insane coordination and catlike reflexes. In fact, a major chunk of his boxing style relies on these two trainable characteristics.
He has the ability to literally slip punches within inches of connecting, moving out of harm’s way at the last second before unloading with his sharp counters. It’s like dodging bullets with head movement, there really is no better way to describe it.
This is because Lomachenko makes it a point to train his coordination and reflexes, primarily, before anything else. His pad sessions are distinct, and quite different from the traditional drills. His sparring sessions focus on a specific technique. Sometimes, he doesn’t throw a single punch during sparring.
One unique training drill Lomachenko practices is when he attaches a tennis ball to his head with an elastic band, using it as sort of a double-ended bag almost. This improves his hand-eye coordination, his footwork, and his reflexes.
If you want to develop coordination and reflexes like Lomachenko, you have to train unconventionally.
3) Breaking down opponents tactically
Being an Olympic gold medalist and an amateur standout, you know Lomachenko has the basic fundamentals down pat. He’s mastered the textbook techniques, in addition to putting his own spin to create his own style. That’s more than you can say for some professionals out there, who don’t even know how to throw a proper punch.
A lot of professional fighters today simply try to overpower and outmuscle their opponents, and fights usually come down to who is the better-conditioned fighter. Lomachenko is obviously a different breed. He’s a smart, tactical fighter, who knows how to strategically destroy his opponents.
— Evolve MMA (@EvolveMMA) May 6, 2020
It was during Lomachenko’s amateur career that he learned how to break opponents down tactically.
Lomachenko’s style offers a wide variety of feints, the ability to fight in the clinch with a degree of boxing grappling, laying traps and setting up counters, as well as creating angles. His defensive intelligence is right up there with the best.
Simply put, Lomachenko has every base covered on both offense and defense, and uses a number of weapons to his advantage. This was no doubt honed over a long period of time, over countless hours in the gym.
4) Overwhelming with speed and angles
Just like the greatest offensive boxers the sport known, Lomachenko also possesses overwhelming speed and the ability to create angles of attack.
Lomachenko is incredible at attacking opponents from a plethora of angles. Utilizing superior footwork, he loves to spin his opponents and attack from either side, usually from their less dominant side. This is especially effective against opponents who don’t quite have good enough footwork to keep up with his deliberate pace.
Lomachenko’s movement and ring generalship is a nuisance to any boxer in this sport. To put it plainly, his opponents are just unable to adjust to his superior movement. Lomachenko controls the pace of each fight, the range at which they are fought, with the ability to manipulate an opponent’s guard.
On top of this, his speed is both extraordinary and deceptive. Opponents can never tell when they are out of position, and sometimes they don’t have enough time to. The Ukrainian superstar has both hand and foot speed, and can deliver his offense in the blink of an eye.
Many of Lomachenko’s knockout victories have come due to his ability to catch opponents with a shot they did not expect. Those punches are the ones that do the most damage.
5) Uncommon combinations
Last but certainly not least, Lomachenko boasts of unique and hard-to-defend against combinations. He doesn’t just simply go in for the classic one-two. Lomachenko slices with his offense, with surgical precision.
This includes lightning-fast and thunderous counters, a variety of hook and uppercut hybrids, light and heavy punching, body feints and punch fakes, all executed with positional supremacy.
Show Lomachenko an opening, and he will capitalize with multiple attacks to the body and head. Lomachenko particularly likes to attack the body, with explosive force. As a result, many of his knockout wins have been with shots to the midsection.
If you want to learn how to fight like Lomachenko, you have to take all of this into consideration. You have to learn every combination in the book, and even create your own. Lomachenko didn’t get to where he’s at just by training haphazardly. He trained with structure and purpose, using his God-given gifts and hard work to craft himself into arguably the greatest boxer of the modern era.
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