Oscar De La Hoya, 48, putting pro boxing record on line against ex-UFC star Vitor Belfort, 44, as they fight for real
OSCAR DE LA HOYA will put his professional boxing record on the line against ex-UFC champion Vitor Belfort when they fight.
The pair were initially set to box in an exhibition bout, but it will now be a professionally sanctioned contest at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
According to ESPN, the fight has been approved by the California State Athletic Commission.
But it is subject to De La Hoya, 48, and and Belfort, 44, passing comprehensive medical testing for 40-year-old-plus fighters.
It includes an MRA and MRI of the brain, an EKG, cardiac testing, neurocognitive testing and an ophthalmologic exam.
The bout will be contested over eight two-minute rounds, despite regular pro boxing being fought over three-minute rounds.
It will also be at 180 pounds, but De La Hoya and Belfort can weigh within five pounds of the limit.
Triller will promote the event as part of their 'Fight Club' banner, which has also featured YouTuber Jake Paul, 24, and Mike Tyson, 55, previously.
But the brains behind the operation, Hollywood film producer Ryan Kavanaugh, was keen to move away from exhibition bouts.
He said: "It's important to transition from exhibitions.
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"This is as real as any fight Oscar or Belfort has had, not some staged wrestling event."
De La Hoya, a six-weight world champion, retired in 2008 after a one-sided loss to fellow legend Manny Pacquiao, who is still fighting aged 42.
In the 13 years since, he has focussed on his Golden Boy promotions banner.
But after watching Tyson come out of retirement after 15 years, later drawing in an exhibition with Roy Jones Jr, 52, it inspired De La Hoya.
Belfort, who won UFC gold in 2004, last fought in MMA three years ago, losing to Lyoto Machida, 43.
But the Brazilian - who is 1-0 as a boxer winning his debut in 2006 - recently linked up with Triller to pursue boxing.