Hisato Kojima (小島寿人, Kojima Hisato) is a retired lightweight professional boxer who moved down to the featherweight class in order to fight against his idol, Makunouchi Ippo for his JBC title. He acted villainous towards Ippo, insulting him, his coach, and the boxers he fought in order to make Ippo serious, since Kojima wanted to fight the person he looked up to seriously.
Kojima was originally a lightweight professional boxer who had a friendly past with Aoki Masaru and Oda Yūsuke, occasionally sparring with them and was in the Rookie King tournament with Aoki as well. During his time as a lightweight, he had a mediocre record despite maintaining a decent rank. At some point, he broke his right hand and needed surgery twice. However, he fought before he fully recovered and broke it beyond repair. He continued to fight his way into the rankings with only his left, with his signature punch being a powerful left hook. He was a huge fan of Ippo, always asking Oda about his match against Ippo when he saw him and citing him as the fighter he wishes he could have been; as he lost matches because he couldn't connect the big punches that Ippo always won with. In order to fight Ippo, he dropped from the lightweight class to the featherweight class, sending a challenge request soon thereafter.
After Ippo's side accepted his challenge request, Kojima went to the Game Play Game and gained the highest score on the punching machine. After walking out with two of his kōhai, Kojima mentioned to the two how he believed that he is the only one in Japan that can stand a chance of defeating Ippo as he knew the mistake that his previous opponents made against him. Later, Kojima went to the Kawahara gym to spar with Miyata Ichirō, which ended in Kojima's coach stopping the spar early as Kojima was getting hit a lot. While Kojima was criticised by Miyata, who told him that his only chance of winning would be early on after landing a body blow as quick as possible, Kojima left Miyata speechless after he asked him what he would do after landing the early body blow, adding that Miyata doesn't know Ippo like he does, and that Miyata would make the same mistake as the others. Walking away from the Kawahara gym, he was asked by his coach if he knows how he will hit Ippo, since he is fast in his own way, to which Kojima answered that he picked Ippo for a good reason. Later, Kojima went to the Kōrakuen Hall to cheer one of his kōhai on. While there, he met Ippo and Aoki Masaru, having a friendly conversation and wanting to have an autograph from the latter. However, he was antagonistic toward Ippo, making remarks about him and the boxers he has faced, calling them "hacks", causing Ippo to get angry and leave the venue. Later, Kojima claimed in a newspaper that he knows Ippo's weakness, and once again insulting his previous opponents.
At his house, Kojima watched videos of Ippo's matches. When he noticed his wife, Aki looking worried about him fighting Ippo, he reassured her that he will be fine, believing that he will overcome Ippo no matter what training he does. Later, Kojima went to the Bōsō Jumbo for his training camp, going with two of his kōhai. There he focused on his weight management by running and going to the sauna until he made the weight. On the day of the weigh-in, Kojima went to the Roigal Hotel, where he showed up in poor condition due to the harsh weight control. After both Kojima and Ippo pass their weight check, Kojima insulted Ippo's coach, Kamogawa Genji, deeming him to be at fault for Ippo's weakness, which made Ippo angry. Kojima was glad to make him angry, as he wanted to face Ippo while he is at a completely different level.
The next day, Kojima arrived to the Ryōgoku Kokugikan for his JBC featherweight title match against Ippo. At his changing room, Kojima explained to two of his kōhai the weakness he knows that Ippo has, which is his fighting pattern of weaving with the Peek-a-Boo Style towards punches and then throwing a left hook, letting him take the pace whether the hook lands or not. He revealed his plan against Ippo to them, revealing that he will land a left counter when Ippo rises up to throw the left hook after Ippo ducks his attack. After everyone leaves his changing room to let him concentrate, he began to regret being rude to Ippo and knew that what he said wasn't true, while also believing that the weakness he claimed Ippo has isn't a weakness, but a great pattern. Kojima read a letter his coach gave to him from Aki, which said that their first child she is pregnant with is going to be a boy, and that she decided on naming it a combination of his and Ippo's name, naming it "Kazuto". The letter gave Kojima the courage to win the match. Kojima entered the ring as the match was about to begin, When the match began, Kojima waited for Ippo to come to him. After about a minute of neither boxer moving forward, Ippo dashed toward Kojima. When Ippo got into his range, Kojima threw a left jab feint, stopping it midway, which Ippo ducked under. When Ippo rose up and was starting to throw a left hook, Kojima got nervous about taking on Ippo until he remembered the letter from his wife, deciding to go through with his plan. Kojima threw a left hook to counter Ippo's, successfully landing the hit. Ippo was able to recover, however, and Kojima was hit with a left that sends him into the air and onto the canvas. The referee quickly ended the match without a count due to Kojima being unconscious, resulting in Kojima's loss from one punch. Once he regained consciousness, he told his seconds that he wanted to walk out of the ring on his own since it is his last time before walking out.
While going to the bathroom at the venue, Kojima ran into Aoki. He intended to give Aoki a board to give to Ippo to sign for his future son, Kazuto, however, Aoki signed his own autograph as he thought that he wanted his autograph. The board was thrown in the trash afterwards.
Kojima went to the Soehiro to be interviewed about his match against Ippo with Īmura Mari. When Mari arrived, Kojima was surprised that Aoki came along as well. Kojima revealed to Aoki and Mari how he acted antagonistic towards Ippo in order to psych himself up to take it seriously, as he did not want his admiration towards Ippo hold him back, and that he decided that it would be his last match. After being asked how Ippo's destructive power was like, Kojima claimed that it might have been remarkable, as he doesn't remember anything about the match besides entering and leaving the ring. When Mari that the brain blocks memories of extreme pain or fear due to the shock it does to the body, which means his memories of the match possibly won't be remembered to him, Kojima became sad, and believed that it is a fitting punishment for him as he will always be a villain to Ippo. Aoki scolded Kojima for his decision to retire with no memory of his last match. After Kojima remarked that only the elite can get anywhere in the professional world and he doesn't have what it takes, Aoki rebuked that one keeps boxing because of what they built for themselves and sees no point of giving up after all the hard work they put into it. Kojima had a bag thrown on him by Aoki as he left. When Kojima opened the bag, he was shocked to see that there were a pair of boxing gloves that were signed by Ippo for his son, feeling that he can retire at ease now.
|?||LOSS||?-?-?||1997-10||Makunouchi Ippo||Tokyo, Japan||1(10), 2:07||TKO||"Operation World Domination II"|
JBC Featherweight Title Match
|?||WIN||?-?-?||1997||Unknown||Japan||?(?)||N/A||First Match as a Featherweight.|
- VS Oda Yūsuke (Many Times)
- VS Aoki Masaru ?R WIN by KO (sparring)
- VS Aoki Masaru ?R (Sparring)
- VS Miyata Ichirō ?R LOSS (Sparring)
Before his weight training, he appears to have a healthy looking body. He has uncombed black hair and a goatee. His expressions in front of others exude confidence. After the match with Ippo, he has his head shaved.
Kojima is an outwardly kind and approachable individual, easily able to make friends and strongly supports other members of his gym. He is also quick to stand up for himself, slyly retaliating against Miyata Ichirō's scorning of his inferior boxing style with equally damning comments about him being a "bore" and a "chicken". When meeting Ippo, he held a spiteful presence towards him and constantly goaded and taunted not only him but his previous challengers and Kamogawa as well, which greatly upset and angered Ippo. However, it is soon revealed that this attitude was nothing more than a facade to get Ippo to fight him at his best; he was actually a big fan of Ippo and idolized him and his style of boxing, going so far as to partly name his own son after him.
Kojima is shown to be an exceptional trash-talker, effortlessly able to get under both Ippo and Miyata's skin with his comments.
Kojima relies on an awkward and amateurish albeit devastating infighting boxing style that prioritizes solely on landing a KO punch as quickly as possible, with his left fist supposedly hitting with the same force as a two-tonne vehicle. In fact, his punches are so powerful, that he ended up breaking his right fist and was forced to undertake surgery twice to repair the damage. If not for Ippo's iron chin and equally iron will developed prior to their match, Ippo would have easily been knocked out by Kojima's well-planned counter.
As previously mentioned, Kojima broke his right fist, greatly hindering his boxing ability and potential. This practically forced him to solely use his left for delivering powerful blows. When fighting against Ippo, Kojima demonstrated a large number of flaws in his boxing style. Aside from the obvious handicap of prioritizing solely on his left, he had problems cutting weight for his fight and likely would not have been able to go long in any match in the featherweight division, let alone against Ippo. Kojima's lack of footwork is also a massive weakness, as he was too focused on landing his practiced counter. Aoki himself stated that he was able to beat him in a spar because of his inferior footwork.