Rising star Naoya Inoue is not a one-trick pony

LAS VEGAS — Bantamweight champ Naoya Inoue invested a bit more than 10 minutes Monday talking with a press reporter, however stated no more than ex-heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder did Tuesday when he left a press conference with Tyson Fury in Los Angeles without taking concerns.

However fans are thrilled not to hear Inoue speak; it’s enjoying him punch a challenger and knock them for a loop that makes him among the increasing stars in the battle video game.

On Saturday (10 p.m. ET, ESPN), Inoue will safeguard his IBF-WBA bantamweight belts at the Virgin Hotel versus long shot confident Michael Dasmirinas. He’ll aim to contribute to his 85 percent knockout rate by getting Dasmirinas out for his 18th knockout in 21 expert battles. At BetMGM, Inoue is a huge -3300 preferred to win the battle.

“I haven’t fought in front of a crowd since the Nonito Donaire fight [on Nov. 7, 2019], so I am excited about that and excited to put on a show,” Inoue informed Yahoo Sports.

Leading Rank’s Bob Arum has actually promoted much of the video game’s most significant stars in his 55-plus years in the sport. Among those was Manny Pacquiao, who spoke next-to-no English when Arum initially started working with him and wasn’t the renowned fighter he is today.

Inoue, Arum stated, is even more ahead from a boxing viewpoint than where Pacquiao was when he promoted him for the very first time in 2001 on a Floyd Mayweather undercard.

“No question. No question about that at all,” Arum stated. “Manny obviously developed working with [trainer] Freddie [Roach] into one of the greatest champions ever. I don’t know if Naoya is going to get there, because how many do that, but he has incredible talent and it’s not even a question to say he’s ahead of where Manny was [in 2001].”

Leading Rank matchmaker Bruce Trampler has among the shrewdest eyes for skill in the sport. He stated, “I came away really impressed with the kid,” after his seventh-round knockout of Jason Moloney on Oct. 31.

Trampler is a realist and stated “20 fights does not a legend make,” and narrated about his coach Teddy Brenner. Sugar Ray Leonard asked Brenner early in his profession how he compared with Sugar Ray Robinson, who is extensively considered as the best pound-for-pound fighter who ever lived.

“Get 200 fights and I’ll tell you,” Brenner stated to Leonard.

Robinson ended his profession with a record of 173-19-6 and 2 no contests with 109 knockouts.

Inoue, who is 28, won’t even get midway to that point, so maybe the jury will constantly be out on him. However Trampler stated Inoue has elite abilities, and is among the very best body punchers worldwide currently.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 31: Naoya Inoue and Jason Moloney exchange punches during their bantamweight title bout at MGM Grand Conference Center on October 31, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

Naoya Inoue and Jason Moloney exchange punches during their bantamweight title bout at MGM Grand Conference Center on Oct. 31, 2020 in Las Vegas. (Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images)

Not many fighters go to the body as consistently and as hard as Inoue does, Trampler stated, pointing the blame on the amateur scoring system. Inoue, however, has that soul-crushing power to the body and he commits to it. You’ll often see him with a knee nearly touching the canvas as he rips a shot to the midsection that immobilizes his opponent.

But Inoue is not a one-trick pony. He’s equally adept at going up or down. Arum said he thinks Inoue will eventually develop into one of the brightest stars because of his power and because people love knockouts.

Arum said Inoue is the finest bantamweight he’s ever seen, which is a massive mouthful considering the greats there have been in that division. But while it’s debatable where Inoue ranks all-time, what’s not in debate is his status as one of the pound-for-pound best fighters in the world.

Yahoo Sports has him third, behind only Canelo Alvarez and Terence Crawford. ESPN has the same top three as Yahoo Sports. The Ring has Inoue second and Crawford third behind No. 1 Alvarez.

“He’s to me one of the brightest stars there is because he boxes beautifully and he has that devastating power to knock somebody out like that,” Arum stated.

Trampler stated the KO power is not just physical skill but attitude.

“You think of the greatest punchers and a guy like Earnie Shavers, he wanted to hurt you,” Trampler stated. “They have that puncher’s mentality. [Mike] Tyson had it; he wanted to hurt you. Inoue wants to hurt you. He wants to rip you up downstairs and then when your hands come down and your chin is exposed, he goes upstairs. He gets it.

“It’s not something that I think can be taught. I wouldn’t say he’s a natural body puncher, because nobody is, but he’s an instinctive body puncher. That’s what makes him so good and you don’t see that much any more.”

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Jobber Wiki author Frank Long contributed to this report.