Boxing is back in Tokyo for the second time in less than a week as the sport ends its year on New Year’s Eve, with Kazuto Ioka and Josber Perez set to clash, with record fighter pay potentially on the line.
On December 26th, Naoye Inoue collected two more belts to become just the second man to hold all four titles in two different weight classes.
Now it’s time for another fighter to make it a hell of an end of 2023 for Japanese boxing, and it won’t just be the Ioka va Perez purse on everyone’s mind.
We’ve got all the news coming out of Tokyo when it comes to the Ioka vs Perez prize money and how much they could be making.
Ioka vs Perez: Here’s What The Main Event Stars Are Expected To Earn
It’s expected to be a record breaking night when it comes to the Kazuto Ioka vs Josber Perez purse, with the two men likely to beat their previous highest fighter pay.
That’s despite the fact that this wasn’t the fight that Ioka was originally hoping to be involved in, but he is continuing his tradition of fighting on the last date of the year.
Other than one exception, the WBA super flyweight champion has fought on December 31st every year since 2014.
The 34-year-old has won all but one of his NYE fights, with the one anomaly coming against Donnie Nietes for the then vacant WBO title back in 2018.
Now a world champion, Ioke can expect for record prize money whether or not he comes away with the gold.
According to reports, he is said to have taken home base pay of $350,000 for his fight with Joshua Franco last year on December 31st.
After a draw, the four-weight world champion vacated his WBO belt in order to have a rematch with Franco.
He is said to have taken home another $350k for defeating the American and winning the WBA version of the title in the process.
Now it is said that he should make around $425,000 for the first defense of his super flyweight gold.
Ioka is reported to have made a net worth in the region of $3 million from his boxing career with most of his recent fights earning from $200,000 up to Sunday’s Ioka vs Perez purse of $425,000.
For Perez it’s likely his chance to earn record fighter pay as well, despite it not being his first world title fight.
The Venezuelan, like his opponent, previously held gold at flyweight before making the move up to super flyweight.
He lost that title back in 2020 and has only taken part in two fights at 115 lbs to date, leading up to his world title shot.
Less appears to be known about the challenger’s previous fighter payouts but we can guess that he’ll be beating his own previous record.
There is a chance that his world title defeat to Artem Dalakian in Ukraine was his best payday.
It is expected that he will earn around $300k from the Ioka vs Perez purse this weekend, but will he leave with the title?
Ioka Misses Out On Bigger Record Fighter Pay
Whilst the Ioka vs Perez purse is expected to be a big payout for both boxers, it could have been more money for the Japanese star.
The WBA champion was originally thought to be taking on WBC and Ring magazine super flyweight world champion Juan Francisco Estrada in a huge unification fight.
Talks between the two camps were taking place earlier in the year when it suddenly looked like Ioka may not fight on the final day of 2023, nor in Japan.
Things took a turn for the worse when Mexican Estrada felt that he was being short changed on the purse bids.
The 33-year-old fought the legendary Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez last December, in their third meeting.
The pair had fought twice before, once for the flyweight title and previously for the super flyweight belt, with one win each.
In the rubber match, Estrada was victorious on majority decision and is said to have earned seven figures in fighter pay from his night’s work.
Ioka’s Missed Payouts
As well as missing out on the huge fighter pay for an Estrada match-up, Ioka has missed out on other record purses.
A unification fight with then IBF champ Jerwin Ancajas fell through in 2021 because of Japan’s Covid restrictions, he had to drop one belt to take the rematch with Franco and now the Estrada issues.
On whether the fight with the WBC champ could happen in the future, the Japanese star said: “Both my team and Estrada’s camp will continue to have discussions to make this match happen next year.”
Whether it happens or not remains to be seen.
Of course, we don't know the payouts on New Year's Eve for certain but based on reports we've given you all the information on the Ioka vs Perez purse.