Saturday night's showdown between Toshiaki Nishioka and Nonito Donaire will come down to one thing: the ability of the younger Donaire to wear his opponent down with his quickness and youth.
Age will be the biggest factor in this highly anticipated contest. Donaire is 29 years old and Nishioka is 36.
Seven years doesn't seem like a big discrepancy, but couple Nishioka's age with the fact that he hasn't participated in a fight in more than year, and there is a great chance he will be worn down as this fight goes into the later rounds.
One of the biggest keys for Donaire is going after Nishioka early and often to set the tone and pace for the entire fight. If he is the aggressor early, it will benefit him in the end.
He knows that Nishioka hasn't fought in more than a year, and he knows that he's quicker and younger, therefore the strategy of attacking early and often must be played.
If he does, it's going to be a long night for Nishioka because he will have to assert more energy in getting back into the fight by landing more punches. In doing so, he will take more risks, which may leave him open for a thunderous hook from Donaire that will result in yet another knockout.
I'm expecting this fight to go the distance because both fighters are extremely talented and both have plenty to prove despite great résumés.
However, Donaire will win this fight because of his age and overall quickness. He'll come out of the opening bell and look to attack. He will remain the aggressor throughout the fight, and in boxing, usually the aggressor comes out on top.
Donaire will be the aggressor and winner of this showdown via decision.