Nasukawa Ready For Mayweather At RIZIN 14
At only 20-years-old, Tenshin Nasukawa steps in to the ring on New Year’s Eve in the biggest fight of his career, even though it technically isn’t a fight.
Nasukawa, an undefeated kickboxing star, will take on undefeated boxer Floyd Mayweather in a three round “exhibition” in the main event of RIZIN 14.
The fight comes in a long tradition of cross-sport “freak-fights” that have featured fighters and athletes across disciplines, including the original cross-sport fight between Antonio Inoki and Muhammad Ali.
Mayweather and Nasukawa face-off at the Saitama Super Arena, and Nasukawa is focused on being impressive against the former five-division world champion.
“I don’t feel any pressure about [getting a knockout],” Nasukawa said to BJPenn.com. “I hope to absorb, and learn many things from him during the 9 minutes I am provided with. I’m very excited. He’s a true legend and no Japanese fighter has had a chance to face him. I feel very fortunate to be able to face him at this age.”
“I don’t think it will be a disadvantage,” Nasukawa said of having to conform to boxing rules and being unable to utilize his full skill set.
“I think it will be an advantage. I will be further away, MMA fighters are even more far away. I have never felt it as a disadvantage. The size difference is inevitable, but I will be quicker, and I plan to utilize that aspect.”
When compared to Conor McGregor, who also took a dip into the world of boxing against Mayweather in August 2017, the 20-year old fighter believes that he’ll fair better than the two-division UFC champion.
“Of course [I’ll do better than McGregor],” Nasukawa said. “I will prove that in the fight.”
“I think it means everything that people will get to know who I am and get to know that the Japanese still have tough fighters,” Nasukawa said of the opportunity.
“Of course watching Mayweather is always something, but watching how lighter guys fight is something I really want people to look for, and I want them to see my way of life.”
Tenshin Nasukawa and Floyd Mayweather headline RIZIN 14 on December 31st at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan, also on the card Bellator MMA bantamweight champion, Darrion Caldwell looks to become a two promotion champion as he faces Kyoji Horiguchi for the RIZIN bantamweight title.
Quotes Via: BJPenn