This past weekend we all saw the sensational Roman Gonzalez (43-0, 37) make his HBO debut and totally dismantle the world class Edgar Sosa in just 2 rounds. It was Gonzalez's second defense of the WBC Flyweight and it was the sort of performance that had both HBO and Boxnation gushing over him. It was, for all intents and purposes, the perfect statement win for the Teiken promoted fighter who knew he had to to show HBO what they had been missing all these years.
Whilst Gonzalez was clearly proving how good he was, he was also doing other things. Namely creating a buzz about himself and the lighter weight classes, weight classes that American TV networks have shied away from for far too long. That has left many American fans in the dark about how good fighters like Gonzalez really are, and how good some of the fights in the lower weights have been. Hopefully his performance has opened the door for the smaller men in the US especially considering the potential super fight that we seem to be moving towards.
Of course that super fight is a contest between Gonzalez and Japan's sensational Naoya Inoue (8-0, 7), the current WBO Super Flyweight king and the fastest rising star of Japanese boxing.
After Gonzalez's win over Sosa he said in the ring that he was open to a bout with Inoue, though the decision would be left to his promotional outfit, Teiken. It seems however that it is a bout Gonzalez wants and in a press conference he hinted that he'd like to make 2 more defenses of his Flyweight title before rushing towards an Inoue bout at Super Flyweight.
Whilst the possible opponents for those 2 defenses aren't clear we know we're not the only ones hoping to see Gonzalez in a rematch with WBA/WBO unified champion Juan Francisco Estrada (32-2, 23) and possibly the winner of the upcoming IBF Flyweight title fight between Amnat Ruenroeng (15-0, 5) and John Riel Casimero (21-2, 13). Other options however include the likes of Kazuto Ioka (17-1, 10), Moruti Mthalane (31-2, 20), Brian Viloria (35-4-0-2, 21) or unbeaten Thai Nawaphon Por Chokchai (27-0, 20), who just so happens to be the WBC's #1 contender. Hopefully those will be shown on HBO as well and, with some luck, Gonzalez won't just open the door for the lower weights but will smash the door down.
Whilst Gonzalez could get those 2 defenses out of the way quickly we suspect he'll be in no rush to make the move to 115lbs. Likewise we suspect Inoue's calendar for the rest of the year will be packed out with his return expected in late summer, likely to be a mandatory defense, before a possible December bout with a notable name.
If, as we expect, both men win their next few bouts it'll heighten the build up to the inevitable clash. Hopefully HBO will give Inoue a showcase before he faces Gonzalez just to build it even more and show their commitment to lower weights, especially considering that Max Kellerman mentioned Inoue by name after Gonzalez's win over Sosa.
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!