Free Boxing Picks: Martinez vs. Lomachenko Betting Analysis

Thursday, June 9, 2016 2:24 PM GMT

Vasyl Lomachenko can make history again Saturday night when he faces Rocky Martinez for the WBO Super Featherweight title. The boxing odds say it should be easy work.

We've never seen a boxer like Vasyl Lomachenko before. He won Olympic gold for Ukraine in two different weight classes: Featherweight in 2008, and Lightweight in 2012. Now Lomachenko can do the same in the pros. After claiming the WBO Featherweight title in just his third professional fight, Lomachenko is moving up to 130 pounds to face Roman “Rocky” Martinez for the WBO Super Featherweight strap, this Saturday (10:00 p.m. ET, HBO) at Madison Square Garden.

The boxing odds are heavily in Lomachenko's favor. He's available between –1429 and –5000 at most locations, which seems steep considering the quality of his opponent. But again, we've never seen anyone quite like Lomachenko. Is there any value on the man they call Hi-Tech? Or does Rocky have what it takes to stop this train from Ukraine?

 

Buck 37
Before we get too far into that, we're looking at yet another chance to scoop up some arbitrage by putting both men in our boxing picks. At press time, Sports Interaction has Lomachenko (5-1, 3 KOs) priced at –1429, while Martinez (29-2-3, 17 KOs) is +1800 at Island Casino and elsewhere. Plug those odds into our magnificent SBR Scalp Value Calculator, and you'll get $1.37 in profit by betting $100 on the favorite and $5.63 on the challenger.

Or we could do the manly thing and put it all on Lomachenko. The only loss on his professional record was highly controversial; two years ago, he dropped a split decision to Orlando Salido in just his second pro fight, which was for the vacant WBO Featherweight title. Lomachenko (–625) didn't do himself any favors by fighting passively in the early rounds, but Salido, who missed weight beforehand and wasn't allowed to keep the title, got away with a series of low blows. ESPN's Dan Rafael scored the bout 114-114.

 

Salido Summer Nights
Lomachenko also has just one loss on his amateur record – and 396 wins, which is why he was so chalky going into his first title fight. He's been dominant since the Salido loss, too, rising to No. 1 in his weight class on the Ring Magazine rankings. Martinez, meanwhile, is ranked No. 5 at 130 pounds. He took the Super Featherweight title from Salido last year, but had to settle for a split-decision draw in the rematch.

Once again, this was a controversial outcome, and it appeared to benefit the champion. Rafael scored this one 116-112 for Salido, who landed nearly 100 more punches than Martinez and knocked him down twice – once legitimately. It's not a promising result going into Saturday's fight with Lomachenko. If you're not scared of the chalk monsters, Lomachenko is a bargain at –1429 compared to the other books. But consider pairing that with a small bet on Martinez to get that sweet, sweet arbitrage.

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Boxing Pick: Lomachenko –1429
Best Line Offered: at SIA
Record: 3-0 ML, 1-0 Totals (+4.00 units)