Earlier today it was announced that hard hitting Japanese fighter Masao Nakamura (18-2, 18), a former OPBF Super Featherweight champion, would be fighting against Filipino Rey Labao (27-6, 17), the #1 ranked OPBF Lightweight, on the December 28th.
On paper the bout is a really interesting one with Nakamura being a really exciting but technically limited slugger whilst Labao is a genuine tough guy despite some limitations himself.
Nakamura made a name for himself early in his career as "KO King" and none of his first 19 bouts went the distance as he ran up an impressive 18-1 (18) record including wins over Allan Tanada and Fahsai Sakkreerin. Unfortunately that run of stop-or-be-stopped ended earlier this year when he was out pointed by the highly talented Masayuki Ito. Despite the loss to Ito we know that Nakamura is a heavy handed fighter and what he hits he tends to hurt. The way to beat him is to neutralise his power with movement and making him reset.
As for Labao, he is a former OPBF Lightweight title challenger who ran Yoshitaka Kato close late last year. This will be Labao's 5th bout in Japan where he is currently 2-2 having twice in the country last year. He will however be entereing this bout following a loss in Russia to Roman Andreev earlier this month.
The bout will be the chief support bout for the Japanese Light Middleweight title fight between Yuki Nonaka, the defending champion and a stable mate of Nakamura's, and Charlie Ota. The main event looks like a really exciting one however it'll have to be sensational to be better than the chief support bout which has explosive action written all over it.
(Image courtesy of http://atsumiboxinggym.com)
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