Former WBO welterweight champion Jeff Horn (19-1-1, 13 KOs) was very interested in a near $2 million offer to face Japanese superstar Ryota Murata (14-2, 11 KOs) in a middleweight clash in Tokyo.
But the fight fell apart after the scheduled date was pushed back.
Murata, a 2012 Olympic gold medal winner and former WBA "regular" champion at 160-pounds, has been out of the ring since losing a twelve round decision to Rob Brant back in October.
Horn has been away since demolishing countryman Anthony Mundine in less than two minutes in October.
He was interested in facing Murata when the date of June 2 was presented. But when the date was switched to July 12, Horn took a pass - because his wife is scheduled to give birth to their second child around that time period.
“My family has always come first. Jo really needs me to help her in the weeks after the birth and I want to be there too. To me that’s a lot more precious than money or winning a big fight," Horn told Courier Mail.
Horn’s promoter Dean Lonergan believes his fighter did the right thing.
“Bob Arum then graciously offered us the fight with Murata in Tokyo on June 2,” Lonergan said. “That date suited us but they pushed the fight out to July 12 and Jeff said that, with the baby coming, he wouldn’t take it no matter how much money was on the table.”
Following Brant's win over Murata, there was heavy interest on both sides to make a defense against Horn. Lonergan made attempts to put that fight together, with an eye on staging the event in Australia, but they were unable to reach an agreement where it made financial sense for both sides.
According to Horn, he can still make the welterweight limit of 147, and has interest in big fights at welterweight, 154 and 160.