Naoya Inoue 117.7 lbs vs. Jason Moloney 117.9 lbs – weigh-in results for ESPN+
By Allan Fox: Naoya ‘Monster’ Inoue weighed in at 117.7 lbs on Friday for the title defense of his IBF/WBA/Ring Magazine bantamweight belts against challenger Jason Moloney this Saturday on ESPN+. The 29-year-old Moloney (21-1, 18 KOs) weighed in at 117.9 lbs.
Inoue vs. Moloney card kicks off at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT on ESPN+ on Saturday night in ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The Australian Moloney has 12 rounds that he’s going to have to avoid ‘Monster’ Inoue’s big power shots to keep from getting knocked out, which won’t be easy for him. Only three fighters – Ryoichi Taguchi, David Carmona, and Nonito Donaire – and those guys took a lot of huge shots.
Moloney has a chance
On the positive side, Moloney can do damage if he lasts long enough to make it into the later rounds. Like his brother Takuma, Monster Inoue doesn’t react well to getting hit, and he’s uncomfortable when he’s forced to take punishment in long fights.
David Carmona, a tough former contender with moderate power, gave Inoue all he could handle in going 12 rounds with him in 2016. Inoue lost his composure in that fight and resembled how his brother Takuma comes unglued when he faces opposition that he can’t beat.
Inoue looked like he was having a fit against Carmona because that was a fight that was supposed to easily win. Instead, Carmona really made Inoue work hard for his 12 round win, and he looked miserable at the end.
Moloney has looked great since losing a close 12 round split decision against a highly motivated Emmanuel Rodriguez in October 2018 in Orlando, Florida. That was a fight that Moloney didn’t look comfortable, and he never got in his grove.
If Moloney fought Rodriguez now, the chances are high that he’d beat him quite easily. He’s improved the flaws that he showed against Rodriguez, and he’s fought well in beating his last three opponents by stoppage.
Jason has never been hurt
Going into Saturday’s fight, Moloney needs to figure out how to land his punishing shots on Inoue while avoiding his big punches. I don’t know if that’s possible, but Moloney is going to need to try. He can’t let Inoue land his best shots on him throughout the fight because he may not last long.
Moloney has never been knocked out before, and it’s going to take a really big shot from Inoue for him to dent his chin. This fight could turn out to be a war of attrition with both guys dishing out massive punishment.
Moloney is catching Inoue at the perfect time with him coming off of a hard fight against Nonito Donaire last November. Inoue admits that was the hardest fight of his career, and injuries testify to that. The Japanese star suffered a fractured nose, an eye injury, and a bad cut.
Inoue was also staggered during the courage of the fight from a sharp right hand from Donaire. Down the stretch, Inoue was falling apart from the power shots that Donaire was hitting him with.
It was lucky that this wasn’t an old fashioned 15-round contest because Inoue might not have held together another three rounds from the punishment that Donaire was dishing out.
Inoue needs to make sure he gets Moloney out of there quickly on Saturday because the last thing he needs is another grueling fight. Beating Donaire was hard enough; Moloney is a lot younger, and he’s a natural bantamweight with excellent power in either hand.
Other weights on Saturday’s Inoue vs. Moloney card:
Ewa Brodnicka 130.1 lbs vs. Mikaela Mayer 129.8 lbs
Robson Conceição 128.8 lbs vs. Louie Coria 128.6 lbs
Julian Rodriguez 142.6 lbs vs. Jose “Piston” López 142.3 lbs
Jared Anderson 246.1 lbs vs. Luis Eduardo Pena 229.6 lbs
Andy Hiraoka 140.9 lbs vs. Rickey Edwards 140.7 lbs
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