The upcoming WBO super flyweight title bout between Kazuto Ioka and Aston Palicte could be heading to UFC Fight Pass.
At the start of the most recent Roy Jones Jr. Boxing Promotions card that was streamed on UFC Fight Pass, Kevin Veltre, the promotional company's CEO, gave an update on negotiations for the title bout. Veltre did say that the fight is "super close to being finalized" and even gave a date and location for the fight: June 19 in Osaka, Japan.
The interesting part is that Veltre also said the fight will be shown on UFC Fight Pass, meaning it is the first boxing world championship bout exclusive to the streaming service. The fight was ordered by the WBO after Donnie Nietes announced that he would be vacating his title instead of defending the belt against Palicte, the No. 1 ranked super flyweight in the WBO rankings.
Palicte challenged for the then-vacant title in September 2018 against Nietes, but the two sides fought to a controversial draw, meaning the title remained vacant. The WBO then ordered Nietes and Ioka to fight for the title next, which Nietes won on December 31, while Palicte was ordered to fight Jose Martinez in a title eliminator. Palicte stopped Martinez in the second round of their title eliminator last January and that fight headlined the first boxing card on UFC Fight Pass since UFC and Roy Jones Jr. Boxing Promotions signed a multi-year broadcast deal.
Ioka will be going for a world title in a fourth weight class after winning championships at minimumweight, light flyweight and flyweight.