With the WBO super flyweight title being contested on December 31, what is to become of the previously-ordered title eliminator between Aston Palicte and Jose Martinez?
Well, that fight is taking place just weeks after the title fight between Donnie Nietes and Kazuto Ioka. A source from inside Martinez's camp told Fightful that the two boxers have agreed to a deal and the fight is tentatively scheduled to take place on January 24, 2019 in Las Vegas. As far as broadcast deals are concerned, the fight is currently scheduled to be shown on Facebook Watch, but that is still yet to be set in stone.
From what the source told Fightful, there are still a couple of details to iron out before the fight is made official, mainly the venue. That same source told Fightful that the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel is a possible destination. There’s also the possibility that the fight could be moved to a later date in January at a different location. The winner of the fight would then be ordered to fight the winner of Nietes vs. Ioka.
The WBO title was last held by Naoya Inoue, who vacated the belt in order to challenge for a bantamweight world title. Palicte and Nietes fought for the belt back in September on HBO, but the fight ended in a draw, meaning the title remained vacant. At the most recent WBO convention, the governing body ordered the aforementioned two fights.
As for Martinez, the undefeated boxer from Puerto Rico is coming off a draw against Alejandro Santiago. Santiago would go on to challenge for the IBF title while Martinez, currently ranked No. 4 by the WBO, had been waiting patiently for a big fight after he and promoter Miguel Cotto had a meeting a few months ago to discuss what is next for Martinez.