The long-awaited super-flyweight unification fight between WBO titlelist Kazu Ioka and WBA’s Joshua Franco lived up to the occasion, with both men retaining their titles despite a fair majority draw result. It was not satisfactory because it was decided to do so.
The hyper-aggressive Franco averaged 117.7 punches per round with an incredible stamina of Ioka’s 66.4, but 27%-14% overall, 13%-6% jab and power. was probably hit by the Ioka accuracy gap of 39% to 22%. Overall he had a 214-202 connection lead, 47-41 jabs, 96-66 bodies, 167-167, despite trailing Franco with his 6-5-1 in the breakdown of total connections per CompuBox round. A home country favorite that pulls out 161 power connecting leads.
Ioka is the better jabber (30.3 attempts/3.9 connections per round versus Franco’s 57.3/3.4), and his defensive skills combined with home ring advantage and counter-punching prowess Blend was enough to push his New Year’s Eve record to nine. -1-1 (7 KOs).
The two men achieved the fourth-highest total punch total (2,209) in a super flyweight fight as counted by CompuBox, although Franco’s contribution to the total (63.9%) was behind Iioka’s ( 36.1%). Scoring: 115-113 F, 114-114 (2x).