Oscar De La Hoya’s comeback fight announced as legend faces ex-UFC star

Oscar De La Hoya will face off against Vitor Belfort in what was previously an exhibition bout but has now shifted to a fully-fledged real contest.

According to ESPN, it is now a recognised fight that will consist of two eight-minute rounds with the pair operating at 180 pounds.

Triller's co-founder Ryan Kavanaugh said it was De La Hoya's decision to shift the fight from an exhibition into a professionally recognised clash, explaining: "Oscar is the one who said ‘I’m in the best shape of my life, f**k this exhibition B.S.’ I’m going for real.’ None of this ballroom dancing boxing has had to endure. Both of them are in incredible shape."

As a result of the change, the outcome of this bout will go on the records of both fighters.

Much of the pre-fight build up has been subject to change, with it originally expected to take place in Las Vegas, the bout will now be hosted at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

The fight will mark the first time Belfort has competed in any capacity since UFC 224 in May 2018, where he was beaten by Lyoto Machida and swiftly announced his retirement.

His hiatus was short-lived, as just a year later he signed with ONE Championship with a view to making his professional debut in April 2020, which never happened due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It has been an even longer spell out of the game for De La Hoya, whose last officially recognised fight came in the form of his December 2008 defeat to superstar Manny Pacquiao.

In his thirteen years outside of the ring, De La Hoya has been the face of Golden Boy Promotions, a combat sport promotional firm that put on the memorable Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz trilogy fight in November 2018 as well as owning a 25% stake in MLS outfit Houston Dynamo.

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