The story has emerged that Ioka's body has been feeling the toll of having 3 notable bouts a year and that he is intending to just have two bouts this year. Not only will that give his body time to rest but also open up more negotiating time for the big bouts that he's hoping to have, including bouts with Roman Gonzalez, Amnat Rueroeng and Juan Francisco Estrada.
Whilst it's not yet been confirmed that Ioka has put back a bout for May the story does seem to make sense given that we are only a few weeks from the "Golden Week", a week where the Japanese have a number of national holidays, and Ioka hasn't been linked publicly to any major opponents. In fact much of the news in regards to Ioka has been his recent training camp in Okinawa and his relationship with singer Nana Tanimura.
We'll await developments on this one, but if Ioka does fight only twice in the 2016 it'll be just the second time in his career, following a career defining 2012 which saw him unify the WBA and WBC Minimumweight titles, and become a 2-weight world champion.
(Image courtesy of Sponichi_