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- Characters Introduced: None
- Locations Introduced: None
- Techniques Introduced: None
- Mentioned Boxers: None
- Title Page Character(s): Makunouchi Ippo, Takamura Mamoru, Aoki Masaru, Kimura Tatsuya, Itagaki Manabu, Yagi Haruhiko
Ippo arrives at the gym in time to see the poster for his upcoming title defense, and Yagi explains that the reason for which only Ippo's picture is on it, is because Yamada's name as a boxer is still irrelevant.
While Ippo is mitt hitting with Kamogawa, the latter gives him instructions on different combinations. When he tells Ippo to attack to the jaw as if he was hitting Yamada, Ippo barely puts any effort into the punch. Annoyed by this, Kamogawa tells him to return when he is in the spirit. While the others talk about how nice Ippo is, they wonder if Yamada being a nice guy himself will be able to hit Ippo. Mari then drops by to let them know that after an interview with Yamada, his statement leaves her confident that he will not pull any punches.
After learning that he is back in Tokyo, Aoki and Kimura pay Yamada a visit. They arrive in time so see Yamada finish three opponents with a powerful body blow, causing all three of them to vomit at the end. When Yamada goes out for road work, Aoki and Kimura approach him. With a cold attitude, Yamada asks if they are there to gather information, to which the duo reply they only wanted to wish him good luck. Clearly upset about their presence, Yamada tells Aoki to open the event nicely for him. This causes Aoki to get angry, but he is stopped by Kimura who tells Yamada that there is no reason to keep acting. Yamada then teases Kimura too about losing to Mashiba and states he will not treat them as sempais anymore. Before leaving, Yamada tells the pair to tell Ippo that he is seriously aiming for the belt.