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Teofimo Lopez and Vasiliy Lomachenko negotiations reach an impasse

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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Negotiations for the highly anticipated fight between Vasiliy Lomachenko 14-1 (10) and Teofimo Lopez 15-0 (12) have reached an impasse that could see the October 3 card in Las Vegas scrapped.

IBF champion Lopez has reportedly been offered $1.2 million for the fight while Lomachenko has accepted a $3.25 million financial package for the fight.

But Lopez’s team, led by manager David McWater, are holding fast on their demands for more money despite there being no live gate for the fight due to coronavirus restrictions.

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Promoter Bob Arum insists the offer made to Lopez is as good as it’s going to get in the current climate.

“We explained to them we have no gate [revenue], no closed-circuit [revenue],” Arum told ESPN.

“I mean, we’re willing to pay him a big price, but again, I’m not going to lose millions of dollars on an event because he thinks he’s worth more.”

McWaters said negotiations were continuing in good faith but doubted the fight could be made unless Lopez’s purse was substantially increased.

“Everybody is trying to do the right thing,” McWater told ESPN. “But there doesn’t seem to be enough money for everybody.

“We were willing to take a haircut from what was expected before, but not one of the magnitude presented to us.”

The plan now is for Lopez to defend his IBF strap before pursuing the Lomachenko matchup.

“I think more likely we would take another fight at 135 and revisit [the Lomachenko fight],” McWater said.

“To me, a lot of this has to do with ESPN. I mean, if they want the fight, I think they should find a way to make it work for Top Rank.

“Bob’s right, Top Rank shouldn’t have to lose money on this – but neither should Teofimo.

“The big winner here would be ESPN. I feel it should be incumbent on them to find a way to make this happen.”

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