In the past two blogs, we delved into the different reason why either former interim WBA light welterweight champion Mauricio “Maestro” Herrera or current WBO lightweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford should be named 2014’s Fighter of the Year. Now in this third and last installment on the topic we will go over why hardcore boxing fans have chosen Japanese kamikaze Noaya Inoue (8-0, 7KO) as their best boxer of the year.
Because the five-foot four inches tall twenty-one year old, nicknamed “The Monster”, from Yokohama, Japan, captured his second world title in as many divisions this year just days ago when he stopped veteran Argentinean Omar Narvaez in two rounds in Tokyo.
Inoue amassed an amateur record of 75-6 with 48 stoppages and garnered a good amount of amateur experience battling in Iran, Indonesia and Kazakhstan among other countries while winning tournaments in his native Japan. He turned professional in 2012.
Fighting out of the Ohashi Boxing Gym, he knocked out at the time 16-4-1 Crison Omayao in four rounds of a scheduled six in his first pro fight back in October of 2012. Inoue fought four times in 2013 against highly experienced fighters with a combined record at the time of their fights of 62-16-9. Inoue closed off the year with a fifth round knockout of Jerson Mancio to capture the vacant OPBF light flyweight title in his first scheduled twelve rounder.
That was impressive enough but Inoue decided to up the ante in 2014 by defeating tough Mexican Adian “Confessor” Hernandez in six to capture his first world title in the form of the WBC light flyweight title in April. Inoue is known as an aggressive fighter and despite being 5-0 at the time of his fight with the experienced Hernandez, that didn’t stop Inoue to take the fight to his Mexican opponent from the opening bell, hurting him early and often in their fight. By the third round Hernandez was cut with Inoue throwing and landing every punch in the book. A big over hand right in the sixth sent a bloodied Hernandez down to the canvas. He beat the count but didn’t want any more and turned his back in surrender.
A quick defense of the title in September against Samartlek Kokietgym, stopping him in the eleventh round, was a quick pit stop before his most impressive win so far in his very young career.
The forty-seven fight veteran Omar Narvaez had not tasted defeat since his abysmal performance against Nonito Donaire back in late 2011. Narvaez and his turtle defense was able to survive the “Filipino Flash” but he was not able to hear the final bell against the Godzilla-like Inoue. Inoue sent Narvaez down four times in two rounds landing a laser-like thudding right hand that would not only hurt Narvaez but confuse him of the source of the power and a left hook that ended up being the fatal punch.
With the win Inoue skipped the flyweight division and captured his second title in his second division. If he decides to make a run at 112 pounds, Roman Gonzalez, Juan Francisco Estrada, Brian Viloria, Giovanni Segura among others might make some moves.