It seems like just yesterday that WBC junior lightweight champion Miguel Berchelt broke out onto the scene with a commanding knockout victory over Francisco Vargas. The fight, which took place in January of 2017, saw Berchelt, from Quintana Roo, Mexico, fought a gritty and disciplined battle vs. The blood and guts warrior Vargas, on HBO..
Four title defenses later, and Berchelt keeps rolling, with hopes of luring three-division world champion Vasyl Lomachenko back down for a big fight.
On Saturday night, Berchelt (34-1, 30 KO’s) handed a terrible beating to battle-tested contender Miguel “Mickey” Roman, inside of the Don Haskins Convention Center in El Paso, Texas in a bout that was aired on the ESPN + streaming app.
The all-Mexican showdown was intense from the early going, with each man having their moments. But Berchelt’s body work began to take its toll from the third round on and that’s when the fight began to change. With a crowd of 5,420 watching, Berchelt began to tear away at his older foe, breaking him down bit by bit as the rounds passed.
Berchelt scored two knockdowns in the sixth but Roman amazingly survived and battled back.
“This was the toughest of my four world title defenses,” Berchelt said. “I give my respect to Mickey as an opponent. The key was my body work. He kept getting up and fighting with all of his heart. He’s a valiant Mexican warrior.”
Roman (60-13, 47 KO’s) somehow fought on, but you could tell his trainer Rudy Hernandez was on the edge of the seat just letting him go on. In the ninth round, another knockdown was scored and Berchelt continued to rain punches down until referee Jon Schorle called the fight off with just two seconds remaining.]
It was almost heartbreaking to see Roman continue to fight in the face of such an onslaught but amazingly he says he will return.
“I feel fine. I gave it 100 percent. I’ll be back,” said the 32-year old veteran.
It’s no secret that Berchelt would love a fight with WBA lightweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko but there are a few things that must happen first. On December 8th, Lomachenko will look to unify two of the belt vs. WBO lightweight champion Jose Pedraza. That fight is set for Madison Square Garden, with ESPN to televise.
If Lomachenko wins, he very well may be interested in moving back down in weight to face off with Berchelt. It would mean another title opportunity as well as another entertaining fight. The possibility of Lomachenko vs. The 26-year old Berchelt was discussed during tonight’s fight.
The fight that makes the most sense for Lomachenko is vs. WBC lightweight champion Mikey Garcia, but that doesn’t seem to be a main concern for Garcia. Instead, the four-division champion from Riverside is looking towards a possible pay per view showdown vs. IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. In a seemingly much more dangerous, but still lucrative fight.
So perhaps Lomachenko vs. Berchelt will be on tap for next year, if all things fall into place.