Vasiliy Lomachenko’s (14-2, 10 KOs) return to the ring has been made official.
Following previous reports, Top Rank has officially announced that the former unified Lightweight champion Lomachenko will next meet Japanese contender Masayoshi Nakatani (19-1, 13 KOs) on June 26 in Las Vegas.
The event will be broadcast live on ESPN+.
The 33-year-old Lomachenko, who won consecutive gold medals at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics and is a former three-division world champion, is coming off an upset loss to Teofimo Lopez last October in which he surrendered his 135-pound titles.
Before losing to Lopez, Lomachenko had won 13 straight bouts and had beaten notable names like Gary Russell Jr., Guillermo Rigondeaux, Jorge Linares, Jose Pedraza, and Luke Campbell. Through this run, many considered the Ukrainian to be the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
The 32-year-old Nakatani, meanwhile, is coming off the biggest victory of his career, as he scored a ninth-round stoppage victory over Felix Verdejo last December in Las Vegas. Before that, he suffered a unanimous decision defeat to Lopez in July 2019, although he did provide the now unified Lightweight titleholder with a stiff challenge.
Against Lomachenko, Nakatani will enter the ring with clear physical advantages as he holds a five-inch height advantage and a six-inch reach advantage. He’ll need to use those advantages to find success against the highly skilled Lomachenko.
In addition to Lomachenko vs. Nakatani, Top Rank also announced that Shakur Stevenson will meet Jeremiah Nakathila on June 12 and that bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue will defend his titles against Michael Dasmarinas on June 19.