A big fight weekend is coming up in Las Vegas as Michael "Hot 'n Spicy" Dasmarinas challenges one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world for a couple of world titles.
IBF No. 1 contender Dasmarinas faced off against Japan’s unified Bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue for their final press conference Thursday afternoon. Inoue will defend his IBF and WBA world titles against the 28-year-old Filipino.
"Basta 'yung sa akin,. ginawa ko lahat ng makakaya ko sa training. So gagawin ko lahat ng kaya ko sa laban, magbibigay ako ang magandang laban para kay Naoya Inoue," said Dasmarinas.
With a record of 30 wins, 2 losses, and one draw, "Hot n Spicy” earned the title shot two years ago. After the pandemic delayed many boxing events, he finally gets that shot on Saturday night’s ESPN-televised Top Rank card in front of a full audience at Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas.
"Mahirap maghintay pero kailangan natin magpasyensa para maabot ang ganitong pagkakataon. Nagpapasalamat ako dumating ang chance na bigyan ako ng title fight," said Dasmarinas.
The 28-year-old Inoue has an unblemished 20-and-0 record with 17 knockouts, and is considered one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world.
"I feel the expectation, and I want to answer that expectation and I want to be able to have a performance on Saturday night to answer to those expectations," said Inoue through his translator.
"He’s fighting a tough Filipino and I know from experience how tough the Filipino fighters are so this should be a very very enjoyable fight," said promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank.
The winner of this match may have to defend the titles against a pair of Filipinos watching closely. WBC champion Nonito Donaire, who narrowly lost to Inoue in the 2019 Fight of the Year, and WBO champ John Riel Casimero have both expressed support to their countryman.
However, they are both hoping for a shot at the winner in their quest to unify world titles.