Naoya Inoue Proves to be a "Monster" by Stopping Jamie McDonnell in the First Round
By Hector Franco | Senior Writer and Editor
Published: May 25, 2018
TOKYO, JAPAN - At the Ota-City General Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan, Naoya Inoue (16-0, 14 KOs) became the fifth Japanese fighter in boxing history to win titles in three separate weight classes (108, 115, 118). Inoue lived up to his moniker of the “Monster” by destroying the United Kingdom’s Jamie McDonnell (29-3-1, 13 KOs) in the first round to win the WBA bantamweight (118) championship.
Inoue, who is now undoubtedly one of the best fighters in the world pound-for-pound. Inoue knew his identity as a puncher and wasted no time getting started on McDonnell. In the first minute of the bout, Inoue landed a left hook to the head that made the U.K. fighter stumble into the ropes. The Japanese pugilist then moved on the attack and put McDonnell on the canvas with a left hook to the body. While McDonnell was rising from the knockdown, the camera gave a close-up on Inoue. The 25-year old Japanese fighter never took his eyes off his opponent with a look of focus seen only on the most elite fighters.
After the knockdown, Inoue swept in and finished McDonnell by unleashing a barrage of punches while the U.K. fighter was on the ropes once again putting him down. The referee came in and waived the fight off at the 1:50 mark of the first round.
In just 16 professional fights, Inoue is a three-division world champion. Many fans were upset when the news of Inoue moving up in weight from the loaded super flyweight (115) weight class hit the states. With fighters like WBO bantamweight champion Zolani Tete (27-3, 21 KOs) in the weight class, there will be plenty of challenges for Inoue for fans to look forward to seeing him in the ring against.
On the televised undercard, Ken Shiro (13-0, 7 KOs) successfully defended his title in a rematch against Mexico’s Ganigan Lopez (34-8, 19 KOs). The two first met last May in Japan where Shiro was given a close majority decision victory. In the rematch, Shiro left no doubts with anyone who had any questions lingering after the first bout with Lopez.
From the start, you could see the youth advantage for the 26-year old Japanese fighter as he utilized his legs to keep Lopez out of range to launch any attacks. In the second round, Shiro landed a beautiful straight right hand to the body of the 37-year old Mexican. Lopez attempted to get up from the knockdown but was unable to beat the count and still looked visibly hurt as the referee counted down to ten. The bout was stopped at the 2:00 mark of the second round.
This marks the third successful title defense for Shiro. The Japanese fighter will now look forward to unifying with the other champions in his weight class or moving up to the flyweight (112) division in the near future.
(Featured Photo: Naoki Fukuda)