On paper the champion doesn't look dangerous. He's scored just 6 stoppages in 21 bouts and has come up short of winning in 4 of his contests. He is however a tricky fighter with a freakish height for a Welterweight, at 6'1”, and a southpaw stance. He also hits harder than his record suggests, as seen when he dropped the then champion Suyon Takayama last year.
Although freakishly tall Shindo is actually a very credible fighter and boxes on the outside very well. He has a sharp jab, a stinging straight, good movement and a good, though not incredible, engine. He is flawed, and can be beaten up close, but will do his best to keep the fight at range and use his long levers as his key weapons.
Whilst the champion is somewhat well known, considering bouts with Takayama and Moon Hyun Yun, the same can't really be said of the challenger, who scored his first win of note late last year, when he shocked former champion Akinori Watanabe in 6 rounds. The win saw Arikawa become the mandatory challenger.
Other than the win over Watanabe there is little to really be excited on his record, though he does hold a win over Shusaku Fujinaka. In the ring he is crude, he has been stopped, 3 times, but he can bang and that power is a genuine issue for anyone in the division on the domestic scene, as we suspect Shindo will find out about.
Whilst Arikawa is a puncher he needs to land clean to really do damage and for this he needs to be close. Given that Shindo has the reach and height advantage we can see Arikawa struggling to get close. If he manages to cut the distance he will give the champion real issues, but we suspect that those issues will be few and far between with Shindo moving and staying away from a fight, rather than going up against Arikawa in a full on fight.