The terrorizing force that is known as ‘The Monster’ is up to bat in the Bantamweight Tourney Semi-Finals, that being P4P WBA ‘Regular’ World Champion Naoya ‘The Monster’ Inoue (17-0-0, 15KO). He will be taking on his toughest test in his career with outstanding Puerto Rican talent & IBF Bantamweight World Champion Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Rodriguez (19-0-0, 12KO).
Naoya Inoue came into this tournament ranked as the #2 Seed, though being favored by most to make it to the finish line to hoist the trophy, and Rodriguez was initially ranked #4, with the feeling as being one who could contend with any of the other fighters ranked in front of him. Inoue’s last performance lasted only 70 seconds as he ended it with a devastating 2 punch knockout over previously once beaten Juan Carlos Payano that sent a ripple through the boxing world, as well as his opponent.
Rodriguez in the first round also had a strong performance, most notably in the first 2/3rd’s of the fight when he thoroughly outboxed Jason Moloney until Moloney made a real fight out of it late with his sheer aggression and agility, but Rodriguez had put enough rounds in the bank to be awarded the Split-Decision victory to advance him to this point.
As was established to the fighters coming into the tournament, the tournament would be awarding someone the RING-MAGAZINE Bantamweight Championship Belt due to most of the divisions major talent being in the tournament, and with Inoue & Rodriguez being the highest seeds left, the winner of this fight will win the RING-MAG belt, along with the other hardware. The victor in this match-up will advance to the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) Bantamweight Finals to fight Legendary #8 Seeded WBA ‘Super’ Champion Nonito Donaire for the prestigious 🏆Muhammad Ali Trophy, the three World Title Belts, and everything else accompanying it.
The fight will be shown on Saturday, May 18th on the DAZN streaming service. Tune in to see two excellent technicians take to the ring, with high implications at stake for both.