Rob Brant will look to defend his secondary WBA middleweight title against Ryota Murata at EDION Arena in Osaka, Japan, on Friday.
In the United States, the main event is scheduled to start at 7 a.m. ET. It won’t be on regular TV, but those in the US can watch the fight live on ESPN+, the digital streaming service from ESPN that has exclusive coverage of dozens of different sports, all the 30-for-30 documentaries and other original content for $4.99 per month.
You can sign up for ESPN+ right here, and you can then watch a live stream of Brant vs Murata II on your computer via ESPN.com, or on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, or other streaming device via the ESPN app.
Brant vs Murata II Preview
In October, Brant took the secondary WBA middleweight title from Murata via unanimous decision in Las Vegas.
The 28-year-old Brant threw 1,262 punches, three shy of the most ever thrown by a middleweight in a single fight, according to CompuBox. Murata, then 32 and now 33, offered 774 punches.
“I’m really bad against boxers who are quick on their feet,” Murata said, according to Kyodo News. “I took a lot of blows. It’s the first time I’ve taken such a beating.”
After Murata’s defeat, reporters asked the Nara, Japan, native if he intended to continue boxing.
“I can’t answer that yet,” the 2012 Olympic gold medalist said, per Kyodo News. “I want to talk about it with the people around me.
“I don’t have any regrets because I have confidence in what I’ve done up to this point. Hopefully, when I look back at this in 10 years — or maybe even in one year — I’ll be glad I experienced a fight like this.”
Murata hasn’t fought since the loss. Brant, of St. Paul, Minnesota, defended his title with an 11th-round TKO of Khasan Baysangurov in February.
“I heard the rematch was something that they were interested in, and honestly, I thought it was right — he came to the United States and gave me a shot at the title,” Brant said of Murata and his camp, according to ESPN. “I feel it’s right for me to go to Japan and give him a shot back.
“Of course, there is a financial gain in going over to Japan as well. [And] I’m very comfortable in feeling that I’m going to beat him again.”
Betting venues massively favored Murata the first time these fighters met. Now it’s the other way around.
“He’s like a LeBron James-type figure over there,” Brant said, per ESPN. “When we went to the press conference, there were more people than were at some of my early pro fights. [But] I’m excited for it more than I am intimidated by it.”
Brant added: “The one thing I realize is that you can’t get it in your head too much that you’re going outside of your country, outside your comfort zone, you can’t let it change you too much.
“I expect [Murata] to come out very hot [being at home], probably in the first third of the fight. I think he’s going to come out there and do what everybody does, as someone who’s a volume puncher — try to take [my] jab away and try to go to the body.”
Source: New feed