Team Fulton concerned with how Naoya Inoue’s hands wrapped, could pull out

By Boxing News - 07/22/2023 - Comments

By Dan Ambrose: Stephen Fulton’s trainer says he has concerns about how Naoya Inoue’s hands have been wrapped during today’s final press conference for their scheduled fight next Tuesday, July 25th, at the Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan.

(Courtesy: Naoki Fukuda)

Stephen’s trainer said he told him he doesn’t care if ‘Monster’ Inoue had “bricks in his gloves” because he’ll beat him anyway. His trainer does care, and he says he’s not going to allow that to happen.

Fulton’s trainer claimed that the former three-division world champion ‘Monster’ Inoue (24-0, 21 KOs) had had a lot of tape on his hand wraps, forming a “cast” for some of his past fights. He says that if hands aren’t wrapped correctly, he won’t let Fulton go through with the fight out of concern for his safety.

Inoue is known for scoring one-punch knockouts, and he’s done this throughout his career. Obviously, if it turns out that his knockouts have been a result of using a lot of tape for his hand wraps, as Fulton’s trainer is accusing him of, it would tarnish his career.

It is impossible to know how they would prove that Inoue used excessive take on his hand wraps in the past.

Fulton’s trainer will obviously be watching Inoue like a hawk when he’s having his hands wrapped on July 25th, and he’ll make sure that it’s to his satisfaction. The question is, will Inoue’s power decrease if he’s using less tape to give weight to his hands?

It’s going to cost Fulton a lot of money if he pulls out of the fight, and he may not get another chance to fight Inoue. What was surprising was how subdued Inoue looked during all this, showing very little emotion and not blowing his stack the way many fighters would have if they were in his position.

Although Fulton (21-0, 8 KOs) looked surprised by his trainer’s prepared statement, he didn’t speak up, and presumably, he knew about this ahead of time.

Fulton’s trainer talked about them being “behind enemy lines,” fighting Inoue in Japan. It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out. Will Fulton’s trainer get Inoue’s coach to use less tape on his hands?

If Fulton’s trainer can get Inoue to use less tape, who knows how that will affect his power? Without power, Inoue’s ship is sunk because he doesn’t possess the same boxing skills as Fulton, who is leagues above him in skills.

What Inoue has going for him is hand speed, power, and accuracy. His work rate is low because he loads up on his shots like Canelo Alvarez, always looking for a one-punch stoppage.

“I talked to Fulton about my concerns, and he asked me not to discuss my concerns. Fulton said, ‘I don’t care if he has bricks in his gloves.  I will still win,'” said Stephen Fulton’s trainer during today’s final press conference for his title defense against Naoya Inoue on Tuesday, July 25th, in Tokyo, Japan.

“As I admire his courage, I have to do my job and look out for his safety. In previous fights, Inoue and his team have wrapped his hands with an excessive amount of tape on his skin and then put gauze and more tape, which creates a cast.

“This is not an assumption. I have proof. We could also wrap our hands in the same fashion, but where is the level of safety for the fighter? If this issue isn’t resolved, I will not allow my fighter into the ring.

We are already behind enemy lines. We have made no requests, nothing at all. We have not even asked for a rematch clause. This is the only request that we had made. I would like for the hand wraps to be wrapped in a safe manner, not with tape on the hands or on the skin,” said Fulton’s trainer.

YouTube video