Bob Arum Gives An Update On Naoya Inoue – John Riel Casimero
When Top Rank announced they inked a co-promotional deal with IBF/WBA “Super” World Bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue (19-0, 16 KOs) in November 2019, fans were excited over the news. United States hardcore boxing fans were particularly enthusiastic by the signing and the chance to see the Japanese superstar in person.
The 26-year-old was set to make his Top Rank debut on April 25, 2020 against WBO World Bantamweight champion John Riel Casimero (29-4, 20 KOs) on ESPN. However, the sport was put on freeze due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, Inoue – Casimero was postponed and as of right now, no make-up date has been announced.
During a virtual conversation with iFL TV, Top Rank boss Bob Arum gave an update on the bout.
“We’ve been talking with our colleagues in Japan, Honda and Ohashi, the manager of Inoue. We’re trying to arrange when we can get Inoue over here. Travel restrictions are a bitch to go around.
We would like him to be here in September because we can do his event with Casimero with a limited audience because he is so popular with Japanese and Japanese-Americans.
I would like to put it in an arena where we could open it for 2,500 – 3,000 people spread out. There would be no problem with selling tickets for that.”
The key is accessibility to both fighters. As Arum noted, travel restrictions due to the obvious concerns regarding COVID-19 are making things difficult. And as of press time, both Inoue and Casimero cannot leave their respective countries of Japan and the Philippines due to the ongoing pandemic.
In spite of the current barriers, all parties involved are in constant contact and working together. Arum is confident that a unification bout between the two 118-pounders will ultimately happen. Stay tuned to 3KingsBoxing for further updates.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.