Floyd Mayweather has sensationally announced that he will fight against kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa on New Year's Eve in Saitama, Japan.
The 41-year-old boxer, undefeated in all 50 of his career bouts, has long been confronted with switching to mixed martial arts against Conor McGregor or Khabib Nurmagomedov.
He announced Monday that he has signed with the Japanese martial arts promotion company RIZIN Fighting Federation, although it is not yet known what rules apply in places when he fights 20-year-old Nasukawa.
Floyd Mayweather will fight Japanese kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa on New Year's Eve
Mayweather has signed with the Japanese MMA doctorate RIZIN Fighting Federation
It has not yet been decided in what format and with what rules Mayweather will fight
At a press conference in Tokyo on Monday, the two biggest names of UFC were not mentioned.
Instead, Mayweather said the decision to fight in Japan was to expand his global profile.
"I wanted to do something different. I wanted to show my skills outside the US and be in a special fight, "he said.
"I talked to my team and RIZIN and we put it together.
"I have fought in all 50 of my fights in the US As a professional, I did not have the opportunity to go outside the US to show my skills and show my talent for the world."
Nasukawa participates in RIZIN Championships in both MMA and Kickboxing. He has won all four of his MMA bouts and has won 27 out of 27 in kickboxing, 21 of them by knockout.
While boxing rules restrict fights to the use of fists, MMA rules may include kicks, knees and elbow strikes, as well as wrestling, joint locks, and chokes.
Mayweather said the fighting conditions would be decided in the next few weeks.
"As far as the weight class and the rules are concerned, we will talk about it and get that situation within the next few weeks," said Mayweather.
Nasukawa, 20, participates in MMA and Kickboxing and has won all four of his bouts
Mayweather said he was thrilled to show his skills outside the United States
In an interview on Saturday, the 41-year-old said he would fight well under any format.
The Rizin Fighting Federation was founded in 2015 by Japanese businessman Nobuyuki Sakakibara, former President of Pride Fighting Championships, before being sold in 2007 to the then owners of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Sakakibara was obviously thrilled with his coup.
"There were many twists and turns to come here," he said, sitting between Mayweather and Nasukawa.
"We first negotiated with Mayweather Page to convince him to join Rizin.
"(Then) Nasukawa Tenshin was the first one we could think of and the only one we can think of (for this game)."
Mayweather's last fight in 2017 was to defeat Irish MMA fighter Conor McGregor, set his boxing record at 50-0 and earned nearly $ 300 million (£ 230 million).
Mayweather is expected to train against Nasukawa in America on Tuesday
Mayweather's last fight was in August 2017, when he defeated Conor McGregor
Mayweather had emerged from a nearly two-year retirement to fight McGregor. After that, he said he was done with boxing.
"We do stupid things sometimes, but I'm not a fool. If I see a chance to make $ 300 million in 36 minutes, why not? "He said after this fight in Las Vegas.
"But this is the last one, you have my word on it."
The finances of the RIZIN deal were not announced at the press conference on Monday. He is expected to return to the United States on Tuesday to begin training.