WBC Light Flyweight champion Adrian "El Confesor" Hernandez (29-2-1, 18) has revealed that he has had an offer to defend his world title in Japan.
The 28 year old champion from Toluca who successfully defended his title this past Saturday by stopping Puerto Rico's Janiel Rivera in 3 rounds hasn't revealed who it was that contacted him though we've got guesses.
The first of those is super prospect Naoya Inoue (5-0, 4) who has made it very clear that he wants a world title bout next. Inoue, wanting to become the national record holder for "fewest fights to become a world champion" has been talking about a world title fight for a while and his promoter, Hideyuki Ohashi will almost certainly eye this up as his best opportunity to get a title fight in the first half of 2014.
Ranked #4 by the WBC Inoue would be a very well deserving challenger and a man who is looking every bit of the "Monster" that fans and media are dubbing him.
The second option would be Shin Ono (16-5-2, 2). Ono, ranked #5 by the WBC wouldn't be as an attractive option from our point of view though may be the safest option from Hernandez's point of view.
Ono is is a former OPBF champion and holds a notable split decision over Omari Kimweri, who was once lined up to fight Xiong Zhao Zhong, though other than that there is little of note on his record and his lack of punch wouldn't trouble Hernandez who is big and strong at the weight.
For Ono to remain part of the conversation he will need to get by Takumi Suda (10-9-2, 2) on March 1st, though that should really just be a formality.
The final option, and possibly the most interesting to global boxing fans, would see Hernandez travelling to fight WBA champion Kazuto Ioka (14-0, 9) in a major unification contest. Something we know Ioka wants.
Whilst this bout is feasible we tend to think it's probably the least likely with Inoue's camp likely offering the bigger purse and Ioka looking elsewhere. Rumour is Ioka has already offered a fight to WBA #2 ranked Randy Petalcorin (20-1-1, 15) and will be seeking a unification later in the year, possibly against Inoue or Ono if they were to defeat Hernandez.
Although Hernandez seems willing to travel this wouldn't be his first foray to Asia, or to Japan. He of course lost to Pornsawan Porpramook back in a 2011 in a thriller in Thailand whilst he also has wins over Kyung-Jin Son and Desperard Yasu, both in Tokyo in 2007. In fact outside of Mexico Hernandez is 5-1 with his sole loss coming to Porpramook.
In regards to his form against Japanese fighters Hernandez holds wins not only over Yasu but also over to Atsushi Kakutani, who was stopped by Hernandez last year.
Whatever option Hernandez takes we'll be sure to inform you as soon as we know as we all get prepared for what could be one of the biggest "little men" fights of the year.
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