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List of Articles by Joaquin Henson



Who’s the real monster?

By Joaquin Henson
PhilBoxing.com
01 Aug 2019


Nonito Donaire, Jr. and GAB chairman Abraham Mitra.

Ringstar Sports CEO Richard Schaefer downplayed Japanese superstar Naoya Inoue’s reputation as a “monster” and instead, called super WBA bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire, Jr. the “real” monster as he confirmed yesterday talks leading to their showdown in the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) final in Tokyo on Nov. 9.

Schaefer, a former Swiss banker who used to be Golden Boy Promotions’ CEO, is Donaire’s promoter. He said the WBSS is “still working on it” but set the date and place for the fight.

Donaire said he has stayed in shape working out in the gym during the long process of negotiations. “The WBSS put together an amazing tournament and concept for boxers,” he said. “I appreciate including me and giving the opportunity. A fight against Inoue is a fight that needs to be done to determine the best in the division.”

Donaire said he expected the WBSS final to take place at the end of last month but there were “unforeseeable” issues that delayed the staging. He left it up to Schaefer, a WBSS co-founder, to guide him in making the decision that is best for his career.

Inoue, 26, is known as “kaibutsu,” Japanese for monster. He’s also been dubbed “mini Mike Tyson” for his knockout power. His record is 18-0, with 16 KOs. Inoue’s last three fights finished in 441 seconds or 7 1/2 minutes over four rounds. Three of his knockout victims were Filipinos Crison Omayao, Jerson Mancio and Warlito Parrenas. He now holds the regular WBA and IBF bantamweight titles.

In the run-up to the WBSS final, Inoue demolished the Dominican Republic’s Juan Carlos Payano in one round and Puerto Rico’s Emmanuel Rodriguez in two while Donaire stopped Belfast’s Ryan Burnett in four and Missouri’s Stephon Young in six. The WBSS final will unify the WBA and IBF championships. WBO bantamweight ruler Zolani Tete of South Africa was supposed to be Donaire’s semifinal opponent but withdrew because of a supposed injury. WBC bantamweight beltholder Nordine Oubaali of France did not participate in the competition.

Both Inoue and Donaire are multiple world champions. Donaire, 36, has held the IBF/IBO flyweight, interim WBA superflyweight, WBO superbantamweight and WBA featherweight titles aside from the WBC/WBO bantamweight crown. Inoue was the WBC lightflyweight and WBO superflyweight champion before annexing the regular WBA/IBF bantamweight diadems. While Inoue is 10 years younger, Donaire makes up for it with experience. Donaire has figured in 45 fights compared to Inoue’s 18.

“I think Nonito’s the real monster in the bantamweight division,” said Schaefer. “No one can beat him at 118. He’s too strong for anyone to take his power.” Donaire has scored 26 KOs, including four in five fights as a bantamweight. One of his most impressive knockout wins was the second round disposal of Mexico’s Fernando Montiel for the WBC/WBO bantamweight titles in Las Vegas in 2011. Donaire took out Montiel with a single left hook.

Writer Ron Borges of Boxing Monthly Magazine said “the better the competition, the faster Inoue puts them to sleep,” citing the Japanese fighter’s “brutal body attack and devastating punching power.” He added, “Inoue is a perplexing problem for anyone who faces him … he has tremendous speed, is a more accurate delivery system than GPS when searching out a target and carries the kind of payload that doesn’t require he expend a lot of his armaments before the issue is settled.” Inoue said it is his destiny to prove he is the best bantamweight in the world. Donaire is in the way of disproving it.


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