In keeping with one of boxing's great traditions, rival super flyweight fighters Juan Estrada and Kazuto Ioka will reportedly compete against one another in Japan's annual end-of-year event.
That comes from ESPN boxeo reporter Salvador Rodriguez, known as Chava on X the social media app formerly known as Twitter, who reported Tuesday that they expect confirmation shortly regarding the December 31 headliner.
Estrada and Ioka are the top two fighters at super flyweight and, between them, hold the WBC and WBA world championship belts, respectively.
An event on December 31 at a venue yet to be determined would deliver a remarkable unification bout in keeping with some of the extraordinary, edge-of-the-seat thrillers that the sport of boxing has delivered in 2023.
It, therefore, seems fitting that the year will end with what promises to be another banger of a bout.
Estrada and Ioka are two veterans of boxing who continue to deliver big moments in big fights.
Though Estrada lost twice in 2011 and 2012, he bounced back with aplomb as he embarked on a 10-fight winning run that included victories over Brian Viloria and Giovani Segura. He came unstuck to Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in 2018 but again gave a masterclass in how to return to the ring as he is in the midst of an eight-fight hot streak that has included revenge wins over Rungvisai and Roman Gonzalez.
Ioka, meanwhile, is a history-maker for his country and region as he's the only Japanese male fighter to win world championships in four weight classes — and remains only the fourth Asian boxer to do so.
He has elite wins over Donnie Nietes, Kosei Tanaka, and, most recently, Joshua Franco.