Inoue On Fulton Bout: “I Have Nothing To Be Anxious About! I’m Fired Up!”

Naoya Inoue vs Stephen Fulton July 25 LIVE on ESPN+ @ 9:00 PM ET

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Naoya Inoue Fired Up As The Challenger For Stephen Fulton

One of the more anticipated fights of 2023 occurs on July 25, when Stephen “Cool Boy” Fulton (21-0, 8 KOs) defends the unified junior featherweight titles against three-division world champion Naoya “Monster” Inoue (24-0, 21 KOs) at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan. The challenger is the epitome of relaxation and pumped up about the opportunity to fight for another world title.


Inoue took in a public workout in his hometown of Yokohama, Japan. While speaking to local media, the 29-year-old discussed how preparation has been going and his overall mental state.

“I have absolutely nothing to be anxious about. As the challenger for the first time in a while, I’m as fired up as I’ve ever been. […] My work is going well. I’m handling the preparations. I am thinking super bantam is the best weight for me.”

Naoya Inoue – 3Kings Boxing Top 10 #2 Ranked Fighter

At this point, Inoue is a living legend in his country. A world champion at 108, 115, and 118 pounds, he is one of the rare fighters from Japan who has evolved from a local star to an international mainstream attraction. Many observers argue that the native of Yokohama is the centerpiece and cash cow of the lower-weight divisions.

In December 2022, Inoue stopped Paul Butler in eleven rounds to become the undisputed bantamweight champion. But a month after his win over Butler, Monster announced that he was vacating the bantamweight titles to move up to 122 pounds.


Fulton is arguably the most complete fighter Inoue has faced as a professional. The unified champion can do a bit of everything in the ring. Versatility and the ability to adapt to any style are two of his better attributes. The pride of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is very confident he will go into enemy territory and walk away with the belts wrapped around his waist. However, Inoue is well-rounded in his own right and has unusual power for someone his size. He is equally confident of victory.

Given the prowess of both men, Fulton vs Inoue has the makings of being an outstanding battle. Monster is determined to add the junior featherweight titles to his collection and add to what is a storied resume.

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About Mike W.2017 Articles
Mike is the host of boxing podcast "Pound 4 Pound Boxing Report" and is a Senior Writer for