Naoya Inoue experienced an injury in training and also his May 7 fight in Yokohama, Japan, vs. Stephen Fulton for the combined 122-pound champion has actually been delayed, resources inform ESPN.
The battle, which was readied to be streamed on ESPN+ stateside, is being rescheduled for the summer season in Japan, resources stated. The nature of the injury is uncertain, per resources, however the seriousness isn’t regarded significant.
Inoue (24-0, 21 KOs) left his 4 118-pound titles in January – one month after he caught the indisputable bantamweight champion with an 11th-round KO of Paul Butler – to chase after titles in a 4th weight course. The Japanese celebrity promptly shut a bargain to combat ESPN’s No. 1 fighter at 122 extra pounds, Stephen Fulton. The 28-year-old Philadelphian holds the WBC and also WBO junior lightweight titles.
Fulton (21-0, 8 KOs) isn’t merely the leading competitor at 122 extra pounds; he’s additionally among the most effective no matter weight. A battle including Fulton and also Inoue is amongst the most effective competitions the sporting activity can supply.
Fulton, that has actually never ever battled expertly outside the united state, informed ESPN in June that he thought a battle with Inoue was “practical” if Inoue went up to 122 extra pounds prior to Fulton at some point raised to 126.
” I do not avoid huge battles,” Fulton stated after that. “A great deal of individuals wan na see [me vs. Inoue]; a great deal of individuals wan na speak about that also.
” Had I been extra well-known like Inoue, I would certainly get on that [pound-for-pound] checklist.”
Inoue, 29, is just one of one of the most vibrant fighters worldwide, a boxer with blinding rate that makes use of angles, punch selection and also ring intelligence to make fast job out of leading challengers. He was associated with ESPN’s 2019 Fight of the Year when he pressed with a busted nose and also broken orbital to outpoint Nonito Donaire.
Inoue left no question in the rematch last June when he racked up a second-round TKO of the future Hall of Famer.
Versus Fulton, Inoue will absolutely satisfy his largest– and also most difficult– difficulty to day. Fulton is a career-long 122-pounder that can box from both the within and also outdoors and also frequently tosses up of 1,000 type his battles. Inoue, on the other hand, started his profession at 108 extra pounds.
” The actual fight begins with below,” Inoue stated in January.
Currently, Inoue, Fulton and also followers alike will certainly need to wait a bit much longer for the very prepared for competition.