A few notes from around the boxing world:
Junior bantamweight titlist Naoya Inoue (9-0, 8 KOs), the 22-year-old Japanese prodigy who has already won world titles in two weight classes, will make his second defense on May 8 in Tokyo when he faces mandatory challenger David Carmona (20-2-5, 8 KOs), 24, of Mexico. The fight was announced at a news conference on Wednesday in Tokyo. In the co-feature, junior flyweight titlist Akira Yaegashi (23-5, 12 KOs), 33, of Japan, who has also won word titles at strawweight and flyweight, will make his first defense against Martin Tecuapetla (13-6-3, 10 KOs), 25, of Mexico,
Ukrainian lightweight contender Ivan Redkach (19-1, 15 KOs), who fights out of Los Angeles, returns to face Puerto Rico’s Luis Cruz (22-4, 16 KOs) in the 10-round main event of a Premier Boxing Champions card on April 19 (Fox Sports 1/Fox Deportes, 9 p.m. ET) at the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Redkach is aiming for his second win in a row since Dejan Zlaticanin knocked him out in the fourth round of an upset in a world title elimination fight in June 2015. "I know that I have a strong opponent, but I am determined to impress the fans and show that I am ready to challenge the elite in my division,” Redkach said. Middleweight Immanuel Aleem, of Richmond, Virginia, faces New York’s Jonathan Cepeda (17-1, 15 KOs) in an eight-round bout.
Promoter Eddie Hearn said on Wednesday that he has come to terms to promote England’s Tony Bellew (26-2-1, 16 KOs) against Congo native Ilunga “Junior” Makabu (19-1, 18 KOs) for a vacant cruiserweight world title in the United Kingdom on a date to be determined this summer. Titleholder Grigory Drozd (40-1, 28 KOs), of Russia, was stripped by the WBC and made an “in recess” titleholder after he suffered a left hand injury, which forced him to postpone his April 8 fight with Makabu for the second time. The Makabu-Bellew winner will have to face Drozd upon his return. Makabu will be fighting for a world title for the first time. Bellew has lost two light heavyweight title shots, by majority decision to Nathan Cleverly in 2011 and by sixth-round knockout to Adonis Stevenson in 2013. Bellew has won six fights in a row since the loss to Stevenson, including beating Cleverly in a rematch at cruiserweight in 2014.