Despite nine losses, Kohei Kono stepped into his fight with Naoya Inoue having never been stopped despite facing hitters like Luis Concepcion in his sixteen-year career. It took "The Monster" six rounds to rectify that.
Inoue made the fourth defense of his WBO super flyweight title in dominant fashion, knocking the former WBA champion down with a left hook in the sixth before knocking him silly with a combination. His vaunted right hand finished the deal, sending Kono (32-10-1, 13 KO) down on the ropes for the finish.
Here’s the whole fight, the beginning of the end at 16:35.
Inoue (12-0, 10 KO) is just 23 and has a very real chance of taking over what has become one of the best divisions in boxing. Here’s hoping he gets the opportunity to try.
Fellow champion Akira Yaegashi (25-5, 13 KO) dominated Wittawas Basapean (31-6, 12 KO) en route to a twelfth-round stoppage in the co-feature, while former gold medalist Ryota Murata (12-0, 9 KO) blasted out designated victim Bruno Sandoval (19-2-1, 15 KO) in three for his fourth knockout win of 2016.
Japan’s still got plenty more fights to offer before year’s end. We’ll keep you posted.