Now, perhaps the most shocking bit of news, is that Ioka's bout may not be held in Osaka.
It seemed a given that Ioka would be returning to the Osaka Prefectural Gymnasium, AKA the Bodymaker Colosseum, AKA the EDION Arena Osaka for his 19th bout at the venue. It was where his last 5 New Year Eve bouts have been and it's a venue that is, for all intents and purposes his boxing home. It may not have the legacy of the Korakuen Hall but it has long been the venue for boxing in Osaka and the venue for Ioka.
The suggestion is that Ioka's Year Ending bout may end up being in Hyogo, a suggestion that seemed to step from Kazunori Ioka mentioning something earlier in the day, when he was speaking to the media following the announcement of the OPBF quadruple header. It may have just been talk, and pandering to fans in Hyogo, but it could well have been a genuine suggestion that the 3-weight world champion will be fighting outside of his home city in December.
As an interesting aside this story may well explain why the IBF Super Bantamweight title fight between Jonathan Guzman (22-0-0-1, 22) and Yukinori Oguni (18-1-1, 7) hasn't yet had a venue set, with the suggestion being that Guzman Vs Oguni will be on the Ioka card, and not in Tokyo on a Watanabe show!
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)