Numerous of this year’s most anticipated matches fell through during talks as the boxing season concluded. Talks to pair Errol Spence Jr. and Terence Crawford, as well as Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua, fell through. It wasn’t very reassuring that most of the sport’s elite fighters didn’t participate. This year, only one fight held between Spence, Crawford, Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk, Gervonta Davis, Jermell Charlo, and a host of other top competitors. However, there is optimism that the sport’s top stars will be more active and more fights will occur in the upcoming year.
It is challenging to imagine anyone stopping Inoue at junior featherweight. Stephen Fulton and Murodjon Akhmadaliev are the division’s two undisputed champions. Both boxers would be underdogs compared to Inoue. It is much more possible that he will run into Uzbek Olympian Akhmadaliev. With 24 professional fights under his belt, the Japanese superstar has proven unbeatable, and his contest with Paul Butler on December 13 was no exception. “The Monster” managed to defeat his reticent adversary, who boxed from a high guard throughout the contest. Inoue declared he would no longer compete at 118 pounds and instead go up to 122 pounds after his 11th-round knockout to claim the undisputed bantamweight championship.
Devin Haney traveled to Australia to establish himself as the indisputable lightweight champion, where he fought George Kambosos Jr. in June. The American went to the home country of Kambosos for a follow-up match and won by a similar margin of points in October to keep all four titles. However, Haney won’t hold those positions for long. He will probably only compete once more at 135 pounds before switching to junior welterweight, where he intends to face previous triple-division champion Vasiliy Lomachenko. Weeks of negotiations with Top Rank have gone by with no agreement for Haney and Lomachenko. Since he will have to fast as a practicing Muslim, Haney addressed the subject on Twitter and stated that he wanted the bout to take place before Ramadan.