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Undisputed crown will prove I’m pound-for-pound boxing king: Inoue

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Japan’s Naoya Inoue wants to prove himself worthy of his status as the new king of boxing, regardless of weight class, by becoming the undisputed world bantamweight champion, the man known as “The Monster” said on Monday.

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The ferocious 29-year-old was named the new number one in the weight class by The Ring magazine last month after defeating Filipino veteran Nonito Donaire in two rounds to add the WBC bantamweight title to his WBA and IBF belts.

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Inoue has replaced Ukrainian heavyweight Oleksandr Usyk at the top of the weight class and the Japanese fighter is looking to make it big by defeating British WBO title holder Paul Butler to become the undisputed champion.

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“People said that my becoming the number one fighter in the weight class depends on what happened in the fight with Donaire, and everything turned out as I could imagine,” said Inoue, who is undefeated in all of his 23 fights. , winning 20 by knockout.

“From now on, I want to show performances worthy of the best fighter in the weight class.

“For that, I need to unify the world bantamweight titles and then fight at super bantamweight.”

Butler, 33, won the vacant WBO title, John Riel Casimero, by defeating Jonas Sultan via unanimous decision in April.

He was promoted from interim to full champion in May when Casimero was stripped of the full title by the WBO.

– Knockout Specialist –

Inoue said talks to meet Butler before the end of the year are “going in a good direction” and he has “no preference” over where the fight will take place.

“If it happens by the end of this year, I don’t care if it happens in Japan, the US or the UK,” he said.

“It really doesn’t matter to me. I want to fight wherever he is.”

Inoue is the first weight class king to come from Japan where he is a huge star.

He is also a rare example of a lighter weight boxer being considered the best fighter in the world.

He said that “fan satisfaction” was as important to him as winning, and he wants to “show everyone who comes to see me what I can do”.

“I think that’s how I was able to set my record of 23 wins with 20 knockouts,” said Inoue, who started boxing at an early age under the tutelage of his father Shingo, a former amateur.

“I always try to knock out my opponent and I think that was acknowledged.”

Inoue said he believes moving up to super bantamweight would be “the best weight class” for him and he intends to retire when he turns 35.

He acknowledged that “boxing is not a sport to be taken lightly”, but said he would like to “retire with an unbeaten record”.

“I would like to think that when I turn 35, I can look back and think that I was happy that I became a boxer,” he said.

“If I can feel it, I think I’ll be satisfied.”



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