Hajime no Ippo, or Fighting Spirit, was my first sports anime of any kind. It's a genre that's been incredibly kind to me with other works like Rookies and RRR, so I've always held Ippo close as one of the only long running manga, over 1000 chapters now, that I actually follow. It has it's ups and downs, as long running shonen tends to, but I've stuck with it and it remains good to me even now with fights like Volg vs. Mike.
So a new anime comes down the pipe, Hajime no Ippo: Rising, and we're all pretty interested. The news that the anime will run is actually pretty old, but all we've really gotten is that it will be made. It wasn't until just now that we've gotten a huge rush of new info with the translated version of Chapter 1032, riding the cusp of Ippo's world rank match. We've got all the new cast members:
IMAE KATSUTAKA: RYUHEI SAWAMURA: DAVID EAGLE: GENJI KAMOGAWA:
Iizuka is replacing Kenji Utsumi after his unfortunate passing. He was a personal friend of Utsumi and was asked to take the role by Utsumi's son, Ken Utsumi, so I think we can trust the role to him.
We also have the OP and ED confirmed. OP is, I think this title translates as, "Forgotten!?" by Night Flight, and I think we've got the full version already:
ED is "Drive" by Cyclamen (.) I wasn't able to find what I think is probably the song, but they've got plenty others for your consideration.
(buchikomi) translates as a lot of things, but I'm picking "Drive," as in "to drive in" like a nail or screw, because it fits with a particular arc they're going to do. Rising will contain Takamura vs. David Eagle, Ippo vs. Shimabukuro, Ippo vs. Sawamura, and Aoki's title match. But! They're also going to be including one of the best arcs in the whole manga, the post-war story of young Kamogawa and Dankichi! We always thought that would end up as an OVA like Mashiba vs. Kimura or the movie Champion Road, but we're definitely getting it. This is something to look foward to.
Hajime no Ippo: Rising starts airing this Saturday.