LAS VEGAS — Vasiliy Lomachenko didn’t officially return to any lightweight throne on Saturday, but he sure looked like a lightweight king.
Lomachenko (15-2, 11 KOs) delivered a masterful performance in a ninth-round TKO of Masayoshi Nakatani (19-2, 13 KOs) on Saturday, inside The Theater at Virgin Hotel.
In his first appearance since he relinquished the title of undisputed champion to Teofimo Lopez in October, Lomachenko reasserted himself as one of the best 135-pounders in the world.
The finish came at 1 minute, 48 seconds of the ninth, as referee Celestino Ruiz intervened during a prolonged flurry in the middle of the ring.
Nakatani, who survived an earlier knockdown in the fifth, was essentially out on his feet. He attempted to tie Lomachenko up to stop the barrage, but Lomachenko consistently created space and landed at will.