By Keith Idec
There’s nothing holding up the Vasiliy Lomachenko-Luke Campbell lightweight title fight.
Bob Arum, Lomachenko’s promoter, has left the official announcement to Eddie Hearn, whose company promotes Campbell. But negotiations are complete, Arum assured anyone concerned about Lomachenko-Campbell coming off August 31 in London.
“It’s done,” Arum told IFL TV for an interview posted Thursday to its YouTube page. “It’s a done deal. Eddie Hearn asked if we allowed him, who’ll be the promoter in the UK, to make the official announcement. Something about selling tickets and not wanting to interfere with the sale of tickets for the Dillian Whyte fight, which apparently isn’t going too well.”
London’s Whyte (25-1, 18 KOs) is set to battle Colombia’s Oscar Rivas (26-0, 18 KOs) in a 12-round heavyweight fight July 20 at O2 Arena in London. Hearn could wait until after the Whyte-Rivas card to announce Lomachenko-Campbell, which also is expected to be held at O2 Arena.
“Well, you know, whenever he makes [the announcement],” Arum said. “As far as we’re concerned, it’s a signed deal. We’re expecting that fight on August 31st, and I think it’s gonna be at the O2 Arena. But that’s up to Eddie. And we’re all set. ESPN is sending over a whole announcing team to England, to cover the fight. So, as far as I’m concerned, with or without an announcement, it’s a go.”
Arum and Hearn avoided a WBC purse bid last week, when they completed a deal for Lomachenko and Campbell to fight for Lomachenko’s WBA and WBO 135-pound crowns and the vacant WBC lightweight title. Mikey Garcia gave up the WBC 135-pound championship two months ago, which led to the WBC ordering a bout between England’s Campbell (20-2, 16 KOs), its No. 1 contender, and Ukraine’s Lomachenko (13-1, 10 KOs).
Lomachenko-Campbell, which will match Olympic gold medalists, will be broadcast by ESPN in the United States and on pay-per-view, via Sky Sports Box Office, in the United Kingdom.
The 31-year-old Lomachenko will fight in the UK for the first time since winning his second Olympic gold medal at the 2012 Summer games in London. Campbell, also 31, won a gold medal in 2012 in London as well.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.