James Toney is planning to box again before the end of the year, and then return to mixed martial arts. (Photo by Al Bello/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Steven Marrocco of MMA Junkie reports that James Toney is planning to box again on November 5 in New Orleans, after which he'll return to mixed martial arts. Toney, 42, was wildly unsuccessful in his foray into MMA at UFC 118 on August 28 in Boston, losing badly to Randy Couture.
Any return to MMA won't be in the UFC, though, according to Dana White.
"I thought we answered this question in 1993, but James came out and he picked a fight," White said. "We answered the question again in 2010. I don't think it needs to be answered again. I don't care if it's (Floyd) Mayweather or anybody else."
John "Pops" Arthur, Toney's long-time trainer, says that's fine, and that they'd like a release from the promotion if they don't plan to use Toney again. Arthur says there are three opponents under consideration for a November 5 fight, which Team Toney always makes sure to note is for his completely irrelevant and ignored "IBA heavyweight championship." Don't expect anyone special, if Toney does indeed fight at all. At best, we're likely to see him take on another shot former name.
Toney (72-6-3, 44 KO) has won his last three decisions in boxing, beating journeyman Danny Batchelder (both tested positive for steroids after the fight), getting a very controversial decision over Fres Oquendo, and stopping club fighter Matthew Greer after being rocked by the no-name in the first round. It's been a long time since James Toney was a top fighter in boxing, and a return to glory is not something anyone should anticipate.