Nonito Donaire has his own business to attend to this week, because he challenges Alexandro Santiago on Saturday night for the vacant WBC bantamweight title.
However, in the wake of the emphatic performance of his old foe, Naoya Inoue earlier in the week, who made short work of excellent Philadelphian Stephen Fulton, Donaire has been asked about the Japanese star, a four-weight world champion whose star is burning as brightly as anyone’s in boxing.
Donaire gave Inoue’s blistering performance “a nine or 10” out of 10 after taking part in his final public workout.
“He’s got those lightning-fast hands, I’ve got to rate him very highly,” Donaire said.
Has the Fulton win made Inoue the best fighter in the world?
“I mean, Inoue is one of them out there, I guess for now it could be who wins this main fight [between Terence Crawford and Errol Spence] out here [in Las Vegas].”
Donaire’s incredible Fight of the Year performance with Inoue is aging better and better. The Filipino is a Hall of Famer in his own right, but at 38 he took everything Inoue had before succumbing early on in the rematch.
Donaire is repeatedly introduced as not only a future Hall of Famer, but a future first ballot Hall of Famer, but for now he is still on his fighting path and to add to his already incredible list of credentials, he can reset his own record as the world’s oldest bantamweight champion with a win over Santiago.
“I never looked at what history will say or what people’s opinions are going to be, I’m just going to show up every single time and have fun,” Donaire reiterated. “And [I want to] show the people and help them have a great time. I’m doing it for me. I’m waking up every morning wanting to get all the belts.”