Every fight fan loves a puncher, a hard hitter – Bob Arum included (and Arum has to be a true fight fan at heart to have stayed in the sport as long as he has, since way back in the middle of the 1960s!). And the Top Rank boss, speaking with iD Boxing, says that right now, he and his Top Rank stable are blessed with “pound-for-pound the three hardest punchers in boxing.”
Which fighters make up the lethal trio? Arum says it’s Naoya Inoue, Artur Beterbiev, and Tyson Fury. It’s tough to argue with Arum, at least with regards to bantamweight destroyer, or “Monster,” Inoue being one of the most naturally heavy-handed fighters on the scene today, as it’s almost impossible to argue with Arum about light-heavyweight tank Beterbiev being the single hardest-hitting 175 pounder on the planet.
But is Fury really the hardest-hitting heavyweight on the planet today? Some fans will no doubt point to Deontay Wilder, the man Fury has twice beaten (or thrice beaten if you feel, as plenty of folks do, that Fury actually won the first fight, the draw with Wilder).
But Arum, at 91, is still one of the top promoters out there, with a ton of stars under his watch. And Arum has outlined what should be coming next for Japanese superstar Inoue. As fans know, Inoue, 24-0(21) will be invading the super-bantamweight division any time soon, this after cleaning out the bantamweight division, and winning all four belts at 118 pounds. Arum is certain Inoue continues his reign of terror up a weight division.
“I don’t think anybody beats Inoue. ‘The Monster’ is ‘The Monster,’ and he’s ‘The Monster’ for a reason, and I’m really blessed to have pound-for-pound the three hardest punchers in boxing, and that’s Inoue, Beterbiev, and Tyson Fury,” Arum said. “All that business is handled by our partner in Japan. They’ll let us know when it’s (Inoue’s next fight, likely to be against Stephen Fulton) put together, but I’m confident that it will be. I think April, they’re talking about.”
Inoue Vs. Fulton could prove to be a real highlight of 2023, whether the fight is held in Japan or in the US. Fulton holds two belts at super-bantamweight and Inoue wants them. Can he take them, and if so, will Inoue carry sufficient power up to 122 pound with him to get the KO? Might Inoue be even stronger up at super-bantam? Now there’s a scary thought.