Tenshin Nasukawa Learned How ‘Truly Great’ Floyd Mayweather Was in Rizin 14 Loss

By Tristen Critchfield Jan 2, 2019
Tenshin Nasukawa didn’t put up much of a fight against Floyd Mayweather at Rizin 14 on New Year’s Eve, but the Japanese kickboxing standout doesn’t regret taking the opportunity to face the undefeated boxing great.

“When I first got the offer I took it in a flash. I thought this was an opportunity of a lifetime, and although there were significant differences in accomplishments and weight classes, I felt that I must not run and take on the challenge,” Nasukawa wrote on Instagram.

“The days since the fight was confirmed have been enjoyable but with concerns, and I spent the time thinking about many things. At the end of the day, I got finished, but I have no regrets. I am disappointed at myself since I thought I could have done better. But I will face the facts and will continue to take on any challenge.”

The significantly larger and more experienced Mayweather knocked Nasukawa down three times in the opening stanza before the Japanese fighter’s corner threw in the towel in the evening’s headliner at Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. The exhibition was scheduled for three three-minute rounds.

Nasukawa entered the bout with a 27-0 professional kickboxing record and a 4-0 mark in MMA but no pro boxing experience. He recently defeated Rizin bantamweight champion Kyoji Horiguchi in a kickboxing match. The 20-year-old vows to improve from the defeat after learning how “truly great Mayweather was.”

“I learned that I didn’t work hard enough to earn this opportunity, and I will use this defeat to improve myself and move forward this year,” Nasukawa wrote. “Despite all the things that happened leading up to the fight, I came to realize how truly great Mayweather was. I was the one underestimating him. I promise to make it to that level! It may take some time for me to become the man to haul the industry on my shoulders, but please continue to support me! Everybody who work to make this fight happen, thank you very much. Mr. Mayweather, thank you very much.”

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I have worked hard with a big dream in the combat world. Karate, Kickboxing, MMA and Boxing. When I first got the offer I took it in a flash. I thought this was an opportunity of a lifetime, and although there were significant differences in accomplishments and weight classes, I felt that I must not run and take on the challenge. The days since the fight was confirmed have been enjoyable but with concerns, and I spent the time thinking about many things. At the end of the day, I got finished, but I have no regrets. I am disappointed at myself since I thought I could have done better. But I will face the facts and will continue to take on any challenge. I learned that I didn’t work hard enough to earn this opportunity, and I will use this defeat to improve myself and move forward this year. Despite all the things that happened leading up to the fight, I came to realize how truly great Mayweather was. I was the one underestimating him. I promise to make it to that level! It may take some time for me to become the man to haul the industry on my shoulders, but please continue to support me! Everybody who work to make this fight happen, thank you very much. Mr. Mayweather, thank you very much. 僕は格闘界に大きな夢を見て頑張って来ました。空手、キックボクシング、MMAそしてボクシング。 この試合の話が来た時、メイウェザー選手と戦うチャンスはもう絶対巡ってこないから今しかないと思ったし、階級も違う、やって来たことも違うとは思いましたが、僕自身も逃げずにやらなくてはならないと思い試合を受けました。 試合が決まってからこの一戦に向けての日々は、とても楽しかったし、不安だったし色々なことを考えながらの時間でした。 結果は倒されてしまいましたが、後悔はないです。もっと出来ると思った自分が情けないし、悔しかったですが、現実を受け入れて、またチャンスがあれば何事にも逃げずに挑戦したいと思います。 チャンスを活かす為の努力がまだ自分には足りなかったことに気付きましたし、この敗戦を機に自分自身を改善して今年は突き進んでいこうと思います。色々ありましたがメイウェザー選手は本当に凄く強かったです。 舐めていたのは僕自身でした。 僕も必ずそこの域に行きます! 本当に格闘界を背負って行ける男になるまでは、まだまだ先ですが、これからも応援よろしくお願いします! この一戦に携わってくれた皆様、ありがとうございました。 戦ってくれたメイウェザー選手、ありがとうございました。 #Cygames #rizin14 #BOXING #teppengym #target #RISE

A post shared by 那須川天心 (@tenshin.nasukawa) on Jan 1, 2019 at 12:32am PST

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