Floyd Mayweather once again shocked the world of fight sports after the announcement he will face unbeaten kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa.
The fight will take place in Tokyo, Japan, with MMA promotion RIZIN staging the event on December 31.
Mayweather, who owns undefeated boxing record of 50-0, last competed in August 2017, when he was involved in another crossover sports bout, when he beat UFC star Conor McGregor in round 10 of their Las Vegas showdown.
The five-weight boxing world champion will meet an the undefeated Nasukawa, who himself owns a kickboxing record of 27-0 with 26 knockouts, while he is unbeaten in MMA with four wins in as many contests.
What isn’t known about the fight is the rules - will it be straight boxing, kickboxing or MMA? Mayweather said in the press-conference these subject will all be confirmed in due course.
This isn’t the first time Mayweather’s name has been linked with a move over to MMA, as it was reported a fight with UFC champion Khabib Nurmagomedov was being discussed - promoter Dana White called for the American boxer to contact him to discuss a switch to the octagon.
Mayweather's response to White urging him to call
When broadcasters CNN offered to show Mayweather a video of White urging the boxer to contact him, Mayweather replied: “I don't have to see that, no. I don’t have to see that.
“Last time Dana White spoke, he said me and Conor McGregor wouldn’t be in a boxing match, if I’m not mistaken.”
Mayweather's response to a potential UFC switch
As Mayweather was asked if now he’s made some kind of move to the MMA world would he think about a switch over to the octagon, boxing richest ever fighter sent a clear message to White and the rest of the UFC.
“I don’t need to fight in the octagon, I’m the A-side,” Mayweather claimed.
“So, like I said before if I was desperate, and I needed to fight in a octagon, would I fight in the octagon? Absolutely not.
“I’ll find a way, if I was desperate and I was hurting for money.
“Like I said before, I’ve still got nine figures easy, easy nine figures. And I’, happy, and I feel good.”
As Mayweather and Nurmagomedov have previously stated their interest in a fight with one another, ‘Money’ made it clear if he was to fight a second UFC opponent, it would be on his terms.
“It’s up to Khabib, if Khabib wants to fight in a boxing match, we can. If he wants to go to the UFC and make the money that he’s been making, he can.
“If he comes this way, he already know it’s a big prize, or you can keep fighting for a little small prize that will never equal up to the big prize that you can make for fighting me, cause’ I’m the A-side.
“Like I said before, if Khabib wants to fight you know my number. I spoke to Khabib’s manager a couple times of the phone, actually, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions, Leonard Ellerbe, had a chance to meet with Khabib’s manager in Las Vegas.”
With Mayweather making it clear he will only fight Nurmagomedov in the boxing ring, will a fight between the two materialise? And will the self-proclaimed TBE (The Best Ever) actually fight in MMA or kickboxing rules come December 31?