Fast-rising junior middleweight star Jaime Mungia takes on undefeated Japanese fighter Takeshi Inoue on Jan. 26 at the Toyota Center in Houston. The bout will be streamed live on DAZN beginning at 7 pm ET.
Bookmakers have Munguia (-5000) is favored to hand Inoue (+1200) his first loss as a professional prizefighter. It would be yet another feather in the cap for Munguia, arguably one of boxing’s biggest breakout stars from 2018.
Munguia-Inoue Betting Tips
Munguia’s Career Skyrocketing
Munguia’s sudden rise is a case study in situational politics. The Mexican was rejected by the Nevada Athletic Commission as a replacement opponent for then-middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin in May 2018 due to a supposed limited experience against top-flight professionals.
But Munguia (31-0, 26 KO) suddenly found himself in position to challenge for Sadam Ali’s junior middleweight title instead, and the Mexican puncher made good on it by dominating and stopping the hopelessly overmatched Ali in just four rounds.
Since picking up that WBO title, Munguia, 22, has logged two impressive title defenses. He defeated former titleholder Liam Smith in July and stopped rugged brawler Brandon Cook in September to finish the year suddenly one of boxing’s brightest young stars.
Inoue’s First Fight Across the Atlantic
Inoue (13-0-1, 7 KOs) enters the biggest fight of his career a relative unknown. The 29-year-old began his professional boxing career in 2014. He suffered a six-round draw but has won 13 straight bouts since all of them fought in his home country of Japan with the exception of a 2016 knockout over winless Thai fighter Sawaeng Kingkaeo.
In 2018, Inoue was rumored to be a potential opponent for 154-pound contender Julian Williams, but that fight never came to fruition, so Munguia will be Inoue’s first major fight at the world level.
While there’s a very limited amount of video of the fighter in action, what does exist suggests Inoue is a competent but unspectacular fighter who possesses a patient skill set predicated on him moving around the ring with his legs to set up power punches.
While he’s knocked out seven of his opponents, he doesn’t seem to possess world-class power or elite speed.
Best Bets for Munguia vs Inoue
The easiest bet on the board, as it is in most cases where one fighter is so heavily favored over another, is Munguia by any method over Inoue at -5000. Munguia has legit one-punch power and his hand speed is decent enough that he gets off combinations pretty well against fighters who can’t really move their feet.
Inoue likes to move around the ring, but he chooses to hold his guard high and tight instead of moving his head, and I don’t see him being an elite enough athlete to get away with it against Munguia. Mungia by KO, TKO or DQ is the safe bet at -1115, but that’s still not offering much value.
After seeing how Inoue dips forward, a move that will put him right in line for Munguia’s excellent uppercut, the best betting options are Munguia in rounds 1-6 at -225 or Munguia in rounds 1-3 at +195.
Munquia doesn’t mess around like some fighters. When he’s the better man, he goes into hunting mode, and everything I’ve seen about Inoue tells me he won’t be able to get many rounds in before he down for the count.