Oscar De La Hoya had promised he'd be returning to the boxing ring.
It took a bit longer to make it official, but DAZN News has confirmed the six-division world champion will fight for the first time in nearly 13 years when he battles former UFC champion Vitor Belfort in an eight-round exhibition bout presented by Triller on Sept. 11 with Las Vegas being the likely destination. Each round will be two minutes and De La Hoya and Belfort will wear 12-ounce gloves. The Athletic was the first to report the matchup.
Triller founder Ryan Kavanaugh told DAZN News on Thursday the plan is for the fight to be part of a TrillerVerzuz Fight Club Mexican Independence Day weekend that would feature a Verzuz rap battle, all-day concerts on the day of De La Hoya-Belfort, and the following day like Coachella. Musical acts Swizz Beatz and Timbaland will oversee the entertainment portion of the event.
"Welcome to the Trillerverze," Kavanaugh told DAZN News. "Triller changed boxing. Verzuz changed music. The Trillerverze will change the game."
After teasing a comeback for almost a year, the 48-year-old De La Hoya said in March that he would return in July. The opponent had been pegged to be former UFC star and all-time great Georges St-Pierre. But St-Pierre couldn't get cleared to do it as he's still under UFC contract, and UFC president Dana White wouldn't allow him to face De La Hoya even though St-Pierre announced his retirement three years ago. De La Hoya's last professional fight came in December 2008, losing to Manny Pacquiao in a contest that the "Pac-Man" dominated from start to finish.
Belfort, 44, is a former UFC light heavyweight champion. He was supposed to face "The Real Tarzann" Mike Holston on the Teofimo Lopez-George Kambosos Jr. undercard. The card got scrapped when Lopez was forced to pull out due to testing positive for COVID-19. This will be Belfort's second professional boxing match. In April 2006, Belfort knocked out Josemario Neves.