We could be getting a sequel to 2019’s Fight of the Year, Francis Ngannou is keeping an eye on Tyson Fury and we learned a little bit more about Amir Khan and Kell Brook’s Great British bust-up next month. Here are five boxing stories you may have missed…
Naoya Inoue vs Nonito Donaire Rematch in the works
Naoya Inoue and Nonito Donaire can go head-to-head one more time, with the latter’s promoter insisting that he is willing to “exhaust all resources” to bring about the bantamweight uniformity. Some reports suggest the rematch could take place in Japan in April.
The pair battled an absolute barnstormer two years ago at the Super Arena in Saitama as part of the World Boxing Super Series final, in which the hometown hero Inoue defeated Donaire via a unanimous decision on the judges’ scorecards. The battle was much tougher than many expected for Inoue, with the aging Donaire giving the Monster its toughest in-ring test yet.
“This is definitely a fight that we would love to do and Nonito would love to have it too. We have no problem going to Japan. Donaire has the balls to go back into the lions’ den. you can make in sports,” Richard Schaefer told BoxingScene.com.
“I can’t speak for Inoue, but I know that’s the fight he wants. I’ve always believed that when there’s a big fight to be fought, you make it – and this is a big fight. I am going to exhaust all means and will leave no stone unturned to fight this battle. This is what Nonito and the fighting fans want. We as a sport have to make it happen. I believe we can make it happen.”
Shakur Stevenson vs Oscar Valdez Heading For April
Inoue vs Donaire isn’t the only ravishing showdown set to take place in April, either. Shakur Stevenson and Oscar Valdez will also meet in a super featherweight bout this spring.
This fight looked like it could happen last year, with Stevenson publicly lobbying for the fight after Valdez’ brutal knockout win over Miguel Berchelt in February that saw the Mexican take the WBC belt. However, Stevenson ultimately chose to fight in October against WBO title holder Jamel Herring, which he won via a 10th round TKO.
Valdez last fought in August, just weeks after testing positive for the performance-enhancing drug phentermine. Despite the negative findings, his fight with Robson Conceicao went ahead as planned, although Valdez looked bad and was somewhat coincidental to leave Tucson with a controversial unanimous decision.
Francis Ngannou: “I want Tyson Fury next”
UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou will take part in what Dana White calls the greatest heavyweight MMA fight of all time against Cyril Gane at UFC 270 this weekend, but that hasn’t stopped the Cameroonian UFC star from looking ahead to a boxing dream showdown. Tyson Fury in the future.
When asked who he would like to shoot next, should he beat Gane in California, between a title defense against Jon Jones or a crossover fight with the Gypsy King, Ngannou said at a news conference: “If you give me the two options I will choose to fight Tyson Fury.
“After fighting Stipe [Miocic], the Jon Jones fight was on the table, but it seems like nobody really cares so I don’t know.
“And also, we don’t even know what Jon Jones’ position is at this point. I’m not planning my life based on that. I’m planning my life based on the facts.”
When asked how he stacks up against the heavyweight boxing champion, the Predator replied: “I think sometimes professional fighters underestimate MMA fighters, but I also think everyone has an opinion.
“Someone will say I’ll beat him easily [Fury], someone will say he will beat me easily, someone will see an even fight – that’s the fighting business. It’s an opinion.”
Brook confirms rematch clause for Battle of Britain with Khan
We’ve had to wait quite some time to see Kell Brook and Amir Khan battle each other, but we could see the two bitter domestic rivals face off again once the feud is settled in Manchester on February 19, with Brook confirming that a rematch clause will be in the contract of the fight.
“I believe there is a rematch clause and I’m not sure whether or not he will accept that rematch clause with what I want to do with him in this fight,” Brook told Sky Sports News.
“I think there will be fireworks and as soon as that bell rings, I’m going to march out and come right at him. He will want to do the same and there will be speed, there will be power and there will be everything you want to see in a boxing match in this fight.”
Joseph Parker Claims He Would Never Fight ‘Brother’ Tyson Fury
It’s going to be a big year for former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker as he looks to maneuver himself into another world title shot, but one man he definitely won’t fight is WBC, Ring Magazine and line champion Tyson Fury.
The 30-year-old has been named by Top Rank chief Bob Arum as a possible opponent for the Gypsy King should a deal between Fury and Dillian Whyte not be reached, but the Kiwi says he will look for another path to become world champion.
“We have a great relationship. He treats me like a younger brother, his whole family takes care of me. I have now settled here in Morecambe. I’ve stayed at his house, I use his gym. I don’t think I’ll ever fight him. I’ll let him do his thing and fight with everyone,” Parker told TalkSport.
“I will try to take a different path and do my best to win the other tires if I can.”
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