As we head towards a new year we've decided to look into our glass balls, our tea leaves and our palms to come up with 20 predictions which will be posted over the coming weeks for what we think will happen in 2020. So far our predictions haven't been the best though they've not all been wrong.
In 2013 we predicted that Naoya Inoue, his brother Takuma and Kosei Tanaka would all win world titles. Between them they've won a few world titles, though Takuma has yet to win a proper world title. That same year we also predicted a growth in Chinese boxing, and this arguably happened despite the fact the Macau side of things has died off. We also predicted a growth in Asian fighters making a name for themselves in the US, this was before Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, Naoya Inoue or Kazuto Ioka had fought on US soil, and before the wave of Uzbek's had began to attract US attention.
Unlike the past, where we have made all of our predictions in 1 article, we'll be spreading these ones out with 1 prediction per article, and going more in depth than we have in the past.
PREDICTION number 17 - More world title unification bouts
One thing we've been very, very happy to see in 2019 was the amount of world title unification bouts that took place through the year. The fighters seem to have the ambition to unify rather than just doing what their promoters want them to do, and this has lead to a number of amazing fighters in 2019. Fights like Naoya Inoue Vs Nonito Donaire, Josh Taylor vs Regis Prograis and Daniel Roman vs TJ Doheny were among the very, very best of what we got in 2019.
In 2020 we predict we'll see more unifications, and we've already seen a lot being mooted. There's talk of Naooya Inoue facing one of the other Bantamweight champions in Spring, WBA Featherweight champion Can Xu has called for a bout with IBF champion Josh Warrington, WBC Light Flyweight champion Kenshiro Teraji has made it clear he wants to unify, and was scheduled to defend with IBF champion Felix Alvarado, likewise Hiroto Kyoguchi has stated he intends to unify at Light Flyweight and the Minimumweight division is ripe for a unification bout.
Of course it's not as easy to get unification bouts as it should be, and talk is very cheap in this sport, but it does seem like there is, finally, ambition among the fighters to hold more than one belt. We are seeing a lot more fighters looking to prove they are the best, to fight the other top fighters and to build their profiles.
We don't ever expect to see all divisions unified, and we don't expect to end 2020 with undisputed champions all over the place, but we do expect to see a lot more unification bouts. Be it through tournaments, like the WBSS, or fighters both wanting bouts we expect to see the champions clashing, and we hope that by the end of the year we begin to know who really is the #1 fight in more and more divisions.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
This is just an opinion, maaaan! It's easy to share our opinions, and that's what you'll find here, some random opinion pieces