Emmanuel Rodriguez Ready For Nishida With Japan Set For Big Boxing Weekend

Boxing Scene

It’s a tale of two cities this weekend in Japan as Tokyo prepares for Naoya Inoue-Luis Nery next Monday (May 6) and Osaka prepares itself ahead of Emmanuel Rodriguez-Ryosuke Nishida on Saturday (May 4).

In 2019, Rodriguez lost the IBF bantamweight title to Japanese “Monster” Naoya Inoue, which he managed to recapture last year against Melving Lopez after Inoue had cleared out the bantamweight division. Pushing all of his chips in once again, Rodriguez goes to Japan to defend the same title against southpaw Nishida.

Just two days and around 300 miles apart, Inoue also makes arguably the biggest bet of his career on May 6 against Mexican Nery in Tokyo, for all of his super bantamweight world titles. 

Having shared the ring with Inoue, Puerto Rican Rodriguez told BoxingScene how he thought Inoue-Nery would play out, while preparing for his own battle just days before.

“For me, it’s going to be the best fight that [Luis] Nery is going to have at 122 pounds,” Rodriguez explained, “I don’t see Nery beating Inoue, [but] it’s going to be a great fight. In the eighth or ninth round I see Inoue giving him a battle, that’s when it’s going to be interesting.”

Rodriguez insists he has left no stone unturned for his own fight, alongside his trainer Jay “Panda” Najar in Jiquipilco, Mexico, where he has been using the high altitude for training. 

Rodriguez’s team includes “Panda” Najar, nominee for Trainer of the Year 2022, and the coach also has relentless volume punchers William “El Camarón” Zepeda and IBF super lightweight champion Subriel Matias under his tutelage.

When asked about Zepeda, Rodriguez explained: “We train at different times, but we see each other running. I see Subriel [Matias] more because we live in the same house right now.

“We see each other every day, we have breakfast together, we eat together, we are together all the time, we are more together than one’s family.” 

Rodriguez spoke with conviction of how well his training camp has gone and said there would be “no excuses” afterwards.

‘We’re not going two or three days before, that means there are no excuses,” Rodriguez stated. “We’re going 12 days before. I trust myself and we know the quality of fighter that I am and we know what we’re going to do.”

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