Naoya Inoue vs Nonito Donaire 2: Prediction fight, bottom card, start time, odds, preview, expert pick

One of the best fights of the past few years is set in Chapter Two. Two of the era’s best Bantamweight weightlifters will be eliminated in Japan on Tuesday when unified champion Naoya Inoue faces WBC champion Nonito Doner at the Saitama Arena (5 a.m. ET, ESPN +). The duo first met in 2019 in a match hailed as the best of the year to conclude the World Boxing Super Series in the 118-pound division.

Donner (42-6, 28 KO) entered the tournament many thought was past his prime, losing two matches to Jesse Magdaleno and Carl Frampton in two of his last three matches. While Donner won his first two WBSS matches, he did not enter the finals as Inoue allayed many concerns about his current form. The first round saw him defeat Ryan Burnett after Burnett suffered a back injury in just four rounds of the match and the semi-final match came against Stefon Young who was a late substitute for Zolani Tite.

But, when he got his shot at Inoue, one of the best fighters in the world, Donaire showed that he still had many skills that saw him win 30 straight fights from 2001 to 2012, a period in which he won world titles in flyweight, Super. Fly weight, pant weight and super bantam weight. In his 35th pro fight, Donner also added a world featherweight title to his already impressive collection.

“I went there with a lot of weaknesses and I don’t really care about anything else but just a fight,” Donner said in an interview with Yahoo Sports. “This time, I’m going to bring whatever I am, from a quick guy, a guy who can fight, a guy who can think, yeah, a guy who can fight. I’m going to bring everything in my skill that started fighting this time instead of just going out and squabbling.”

Inoue’s speed (22-0, 19 KO) was a major factor in the match with Donaire, but Donaire never held back and showed his brutal right hand in addition to his left hook. Both men would hurt each other throughout the fight before Inoue could pull back late, including a fatal blow to a body in round 11. Inoue would eventually win the fight by scores 114-113, 116-111, and 117-109, but Donner’s performance showed that He has a lot to offer in the ring.

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Donner will be out of the ring until 2021 when he knocked out Nordine Obali in the fourth round to claim the WBC title and then retained the belt with another knockout in the fourth round, this time over Rimart Gaballo.

Inoue’s nickname “The Beast” is apt, given his crushing power that wiped out all but three of his opponents. Rising to the point of being an elite athlete, Inoue amassed world titles in junior flyweight, junior weight and bantamweight weight class.

Since his victory over Donner, Inoue has remained a perfectionist, scoring knockouts for Jason Moloney, Michael Desmarinas and Aran Debine.

Now, he is ready for a second match with his strongest opponents to date as well as the greatest fighter he has ever faced.

The rest of the bottom card is filled with more matches in the lower weight classes. Takuma Inoue, Naoya’s younger brother, is back in the bantam superweight competition when he faces Jakuya Furuhashi. Takuma Inoue previously held the provisional WBC Bantam Superweight title in 2019 before suffering his only defeat to Oubaali when he challenged for the full title. He holds the record 15-1 with only three knockouts.

Below is the rest of the Japan Fight Card with the latest odds from Caesars Sportsbook before getting to the prediction and main event selection.

Eno vs Donner card, odds

Naoya Inu (C) -550

Nonito Doner (C) +400

WBA, IBF and WBC titles

Tacoma Inoue

Jakuya Fruhashi

Super bantamweet

Andy Hiraoka

Shun Akaiwa

Lightweight

prediction

It has been a pleasure to watch Donner, a true legend and beloved fighter, relive his career as a legitimate A-class fighter. However, at 39, Donner was at an age where his body would often not be able to shake off what had become instinct over the course of his long and busy career. Inoue has already proven that he has the ability to beat Donaire, albeit in a thrilling fight, and he is still 29 years old and has had a very limited number of dents during his time in the ring.

It would seem reasonable to think that Inoue would be able to replicate what he accomplished the first time around and perhaps without too much trouble. Expect Donaire to be a game and give his all. It’s just that everything Donner has may not be enough. Choose: Naoya Inoue via TKO10

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