2018 saw a pair of two-time winners of the Fighter Of The Week award, it even had a three-time winner of the award, and now we have our first ever pair of brothers to capture the crown of 3DBoxings Fighter Of The Week. As Takuma Inoue not only captured his first ever fighter of the week he also became not only the WBC Bantamweight interim champ. It was a masterful performance that elevated the “other Inoue” to a world-class elite level in the eyes of the American fan and the American boxing community. It was an awesome display of offensive skills and a dominating performance that ended in a wide UD over Tasana Salapat AKA CP Freshmart. Freshmart had accumulated a 48-0 record fighting entirely in his home country of Thailand. He also captured the WBC Youth Silver Bantamweight Title and outpointed rugged Filipino Eugene Lagos back in2016. So a credible opponent who had earned his shot, but had no shot against the far superior Inoue.
Takuma proved to be an elite fighter based on his own merit, not just somebodies kid brother. The offensive skill set is complete as can be and for having just turned 23, is incredibly fine-tuned. Kudos to his dad and trainer Shingo in doing a heckuva job preparing his two boys. ESPN commentator described the younger Inoue as a “counterpunching fool” and made mention to his stellar “southpaw killer” the counter right hand. A shard counter right hand is kryptonite to a southpaw and Inoue’s counter right would not miss. He controlled the aggressive Freshmart with the punch throughout the 12 round affair. Freshamart stalked and attacked and had some success in the middle rounds, but ultimately could not cut the ring off and had no answers for not only the counter rights but also for the left hook of Inoue, which has been his traditional weapon of choice. He utilized both punches and showed a sturdy chin as he was hit cleanly on several occasions by the aggressive, southpaw but every time his chin stood up and he weathered the storm and countered back. Inoue weathered the storm that the Thai fighter put together in the middle round and seized control of the fight with clean punching in the later rounds to roll to a clear UD by identical scores of 117-111.
The Other Inoue has put together quite a resume for himself despite having just turned 23 earlier in the week. He was The Ring’s 2015 prospect of the year, he captured the OPBF Super flyweight title n just his fifth pro fight has run off a 13-0 record in just three years and has now added the interim green strap in the bantamweight division and has put himself in position to cash in on a major fight on either side of the Pacific at a very young age. The two Japanese brothers said they went to dominate the bantamweight division. They want to “be the Klitschko’s of the bantamweight division” That is going to be an incredibly daunting task for the two brothers as the 118-pound division is one of the most loaded in the sport. Featuring the likes of Manny Rodriguez, Ryan Burnett, Nonito Donaire, and others, however, given the complete offensive skill set of both brothers the goal of dominating the division is certainly not out of the realm of possibilities. Despite the division being in the midst of a WBSS tournament, they are lots of big money fights for the younger Inoue. A showdown with Luis Neary seems like the best fight available for him immediately and would be the biggest test of his career. As would a fight with former champ Ryan Burnett, who took his first “L” because of a back injury, but remains a major threat and a big draw in the UK. a showdown with fellow prospect Josh Greer Jr who is signed with Top Rank would also be an interesting matchup,