In the second round, Eagle blocked Takamura's punches until he was able to read them, attacking Takamura with pulled punches to get him irritated so that Eagle is able to land a full powered counter on one of Takamura's now wider throws. With Takamura legs buckled from the counter and at the corner, Eagle threw punches at Takamura's guard. Eagle quickly blocked as Takamura threw wild punches to get out of the corner, knocking Eagle's block away and making him back up to the centre of the ring. Eagle attempted to hit Takamura with lefts, however, Eagle had to block and dodge Takamura's wild swings until Eagle used a two-handed block against Takamura's uppercut, getting lifted up in the air slightly, with the second round ending shortly after.
In the fifth round, Eagle immediately set a tight guard, which was blown away from an uppercut. Unguarded, Eagle was hit by a right straight, knocking him down. Eagle got back up, praising Takamura's strength and reflected on how he was waiting to meet his true rival that he never had in his Olympic and pro career, viewing Takamura as his true rival. Eagle approached Takamura with a guard. After getting his guard attacked, Eagle repeatedly threw one-twos, which misses their target. Eagle and Takamura hit each other in an exchange that resulted in Takamura getting a cut above his left eye, which blood emerged out of and into his eye. Seeing the injury as a bad turn of events, Eagle decided to avoid hitting Takamura's cut and changed his targets to Takamura's right side of his face and body to have a clean fight, successfully hitting him with body blows. While attacking Takamura's body at close range, Eagle was clinched for Takamura to ask him if he is avoiding the cut on purpose, however, Eagle doesn't understand Japanese. After Eagle was pushed back, he dodged Takamura's attacks while landing body blows until the fifth round ended. In the corner, Eagle declined his seconds' advice to aim for the cut.
Eagle is calm and calculative; he knows how to hide his strength until the right moment, and how to act overwhelmed only to bring out bad habits from his opponent. He would also use the early rounds of a bout to study his opponent, as he did in the title match against Takamura, by putting up a solid guard and in combination with his Ominous Pressure he would force an opponent take steps back without them realising, despite Eagle being the one receiving the punches. Eagle has furthermore shown incredible determination in his fights, which Takamura compared to his junior, Makunouchi Ippo.
Then, Ippo begins sparring with Itagaki, who requested it. Itagaki displays a quick out-boxer style that reminds Ippo of Miyata. The spar then ended in the third round after Itagaki's fourth down. Itagaki explains to Kimura that his motivation in sparring Ippo is to learn how to counter his fighter type style in order to win against the first place boxer in the amateur rankings once he becomes pro, as Itagaki placed second. Nekota then appeared with fireworks, planning to release them at night. This causes Takamura to remember what happened to him last night at the beach, frighteningly warning the others about the "ghosts". That night, while defecating, Takamura noticed a sea slater in his faeces, causing him to believe that it is part of the curse.
Takamura continues chasing West, who lands pulled back punches to prevent Takamura from countering from the second round to the sixth, where Takamura begins to show exhaustion as he slows down. Confident that Takamura has no power anymore, West begins to throw full powered punches. Getting brought and beaten to the ropes,Takamura sees a chance to counter, causing an exchange, however, Takamura comes out more damaged. Takamura then clinches for the first time in his career, which he then notices Hawk at the audience seats watching with a woman on each arm. After the referee breaks the clinch, Takamura continues to stare at Hawk while West charges towards him. As West attacks Takamura, Takamura becomes enraged due to Hawk and West's smiling, and begins to have an exchange match. When the exchanges push West to the ropes, Takamura delivers a punch on West that sends him outside the ring and in front of Hawk, resulting in Takamura's win.
Down to five kilos, Takamura's skin on his face begins to be visibly dry with cracks as the only liquid left to sweat is being used by his vital systems. Takamura goes through intense roadwork to bring the weight down and went through his public spar in poor shape, while Hawk pulled his punches until his women arrived. Takamura then barely passes the weight check at full limit when the day of the weigh-in arrives. While at the weigh-in, Hawk mocks Takamura's body, deeming it mummy-like, making Takamura angry, but is able to hold himself back. Then, at the press conference, Takamura answers a reporter about a prediction, claiming it to end in a knockout and the belt changing places. Fujii asks Hawk if his antagonising nature towards Takamura is because he is afraid. His manager, Miguel Zale answers instead, viewing Hawk's provocation as part of his personality and that he is not feeling at unease about the match. While Mari suggests otherwise to Hawk, Hawk simply mentions his room number at his hotel to her. Then, Takamura and Hawk are asked to enter a fighting pose for a promotional picture. When both boxers have their fists under each others jaws, Hawk hits Takamura in the jaw. This provocation causes Ippo, Kimura, Aoki, and Itagaki to hold a furious Takamura back, however, Kamogawa is the one to act as he grabs Hawk by his collar in anger. Hawk then smacks Kamogawa in the face, causing Takamura to freeze in anger. Hawk further taunts Takamura and the Japanese by looking down on Takamura and calling him a coward while wanting the Japanese to bring their women to him so Hawk can spread his genes. As Hawk leaves the press conference, Takamura swears to finish it in the ring.
Keeping his promise to Takamura, Ippo decides to visit Takamura, who he finds surrounded by multiple Japanese champions, along with Date, Sendō, Miyata, and Yajima Yoshiaki. Nekota and Hachi also arrives, expressing how impressed he is when Kamogawa grabbed Hawk like he did. Date asks Takamura why he picked the Kokugikan, which he answers to right the wrongs for the next generation since Date's last fight was a loss in the building. Date then greets Ippo, revealing to be a coach at his gym and to thank Takamura for him since he picked the place to help Date to stop regretting what happened in the same building. Then, Date pleads to Takamura on behalf of all Japanese boxers, to defeat Hawk as he is the only one who can do it, mentioning how Japanese boxers feel as if they have been made into a laughing stock by Hawk. When it is time for everyone to leave to let Takamura concentrate, Takamura receives encouragement from his gym mates and Nekota, while Kamogawa tells Takamura that while not everyone who works hard is rewarded, everyone who has succeeded have worked hard. When everyone leaves, Takamura recalls memories of everyone at and related to the gym, thankful to everyone and thankful he started boxing.
Takamura attempts to teach him a lesson of the basics of boxing by throwing a one-two, however, he still gets hit by Hawk's unorthodox punches. Hawk's power makes Takamura lose consciousness at the corner, but wakes back up in time to avoid a strong attack. Deeming the corner dangerous, Takamura plans to escape until the audience tells him to run away from the corner, stubbornly deciding to stay in the corner and fight. Takamura then begins to aim for Hawk's body in an attempt to eliminate Hawk's awkward movements, however, it proves to be ineffective as Hawk is able to land punches while leaning backwards. When Takamura loses consciousness again, the gong rings and Hawk appears to be attacking, only to grab the ropes to taunt Takamura by sticking his tongue out when he comes back to consciousness. At the corner, Takamura plans to do the same tactic next round, and receives a spirit boosting slap on the back from Kamogawa.
In the third round, Takamura exploits Hawk's weakness he discovered by knocking him down early by hitting Hawk as a leaned back to sway. Hawk quickly gets up, angered of Takamura's new tactic of downing him. With Takamura done confirming that Kamogawa's boxing works on the world stage, he decides to give Hawk payback by using his own style. At the start of their brawl, their fists collide. Yagi argues that Takamura should keep using his lefts for points, while Kamogawa agrees with Takamura's decision despite the dangers, as there is something he wants his eyes to remember forever. Takamura and Hawk are unable to land clean hits for some time until they hit each other on the head in an exchange. Hawk stumbles and Takamura throws a followup punch that misses, but hits the ring's canvas, shaking the entire ring. They chase each other around the ring while each lands hits until the third round ends. In the corner, Miguel mentions of Takamura's plan of street brawling against Hawk, wanting him to remember his hometown of New York, where he was raised fighting in life-or-death situations.
In round four, Takamura begins being able to dodge Hawk's unorthodox punches after learning them throughout the match and as they are his rhythm due to previous street fights before being a boxer. As Takamura has the advantage in the offence, Takamura notices Hawk's eyes being confident since he never lost a fight before, however, Takamura believes that it is because he has never been to America. They then exchange punches with each other until the fourth round ends. Just as the fifth round begins, Takamura makes a knockout prediction by throwing his arms in the air. Takamura launches attacks, while he is able to hit Hawk, Hawk manages to land a body blow on Takamura. Hawk then enters an all-defence block, blocking some of Takamura's punches, however, Takamura is able to punch through some of the openings of the block until the fifth round ends. Both corners then notice that Takamura has run out of sweat and energy, turning the match into Hawk's favour. 2b1af7f3a8