Two-weight world champion turned boxing analyst Timothy Bradley believes Naoya Inoue possesses rare power for a fighter in the lighter weights.
On Saturday night in Las Vegas, ‘Monster’ Inoue (20-0, 17 KOs) will look to demonstrate his devastating hitting once more when he defends his WBA Super and IBF bantamweight crowns against Filipino southpaw Michael Dasmarinas (30-2-1, 20 KOs) at the Virgin Hotels resort in Las Vegas.
Bradley explains that its Inoue’s remarkable balance which makes the three-division title holder from Japan such a special fighter and venomous puncher.
“Inoue has every punch in his arsenal mastered – and I mean every punch,” Bradley told ESPN.com. “His right hand is ferocious. His uppercuts, body shots and, as you saw against Nonito Donaire, Inoue’s left hook is probably the most explosive punch that he throws.
“He has a variety of jabs that he uses to set up the rest of his offence, from level-changing jabs and vertical jabs to power jabs where you take a half a step in and you come behind with your legs and push a guy back. He has a right-hand counter, where he slips to the side, similar to what [Manny] Pacquiao does from the left-hand side, where you lean your lean off the middle.
“If you really want to know what really makes Inoue who he is, honestly, it’s his balance. Even when he’s in the middle of exchanges, and he kind of gets out of position, it’s almost like he has an autocorrect feature, and he corrects his balance immediately. He never seems to be out of position to punch.
“That kind of balance is a big part of how Inoue generates his power. When your feet are solid to the ground, and stabilized, you’re able to generate a lot of torque because punching power comes from the ground up. It comes from the feet, all the way up to the torso, you get the torso rotation, lining up his shoulders. You combine that with the hand speed, the weight behind the punch and the techniques and the mechanics that go along with it, the amount of power Inoue is able to generate as a 118-pounder is off the charts.
“An Inoue fight is something special to watch, every time out. A smaller guy with that much punching power is a rarity, and you don’t get to see a fighter with these kinds of skills display them very often.”
Main image: Mikey Williams/Top Rank.