Esteemed boxing writer Dan Rafael has claimed on Wednesday that an undisputed bantamweight showdown between Naoya Inoue and Paul Butler has been signed for December 13th in Japan. “Per multiple sources, fight between Naoya Inoue & Paul Butler to crown undisputed bantamweight champion is now signed. Announcement is expected in coming days. Date is Dec. 13 in Japan, where it will stream on Amazon Prime. It will stream in early a.m. on ESPN+ in US“, Rafael posted on Twitter on Wednesday.
Inoue, one of the sport’s best pound-for-pound stars, is a huge commodity in his home country in Japan and has torn through the bantamweight division with a vengeance, scoring highlight-reel knockouts over the likes of Emmanuel Rodriguez, Juan Carlos Payano and Nonito Donaire in the process. The twenty-nine-year-old has already won world titles in three separate weight divisions and will no doubt look to add to that further before his career is done.
Liverpool’s Butler will however be aiming to bring the Inoue hype-train to an immediate halt before the end of 2022 as he looks to upset the applecart and become only the second British fighter to hold all four governing body belts at once, second only to Josh Taylor. If the ‘Baby-Faced Assassin’ was to pull it off, he would no doubt boast one of the greatest wins by a British boxer on away soil against a man who has punched holes in some of the division’s hottest talents.