Fighter Of The Week: Vergil Ortiz

Vergil Ortiz is now the third Texas-based 140-pounder to capture 3DBoxing’s Fighter of the Week award in its brief history. Golden Boy’s golden prospect joins fellow Texans, Kendo “Tremendo” Castaneda of San Antonio and WBO champ “Mighty Mo” Maurice Hooker as 140-pound Texans who have captured the illustrious award. Could a fight between either of the other two be on its way? Either fight would be intriguing. On what was no doubt the years best weekend of boxing, it was one of its youngest fighter who stole the show. 20-year-old Vergil Ortiz of Grand Prarie, Texas put together a five-round destruction of veteran Jesus Valdez on the undercard of Munguia/Inoue at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. It was a great spotlight for the young Texan, and the golden prospect did not disappoint in continuing his knockout streak to 12.

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The young Texas slugger ran his record to a flawless 12-0 with all 12 wins coming via knockout. Ortiz dominated the scheduled 10-rounder. Displaying a vicious body attack and thudding combinations. For the first time in his brief career, Ortiz was extended past the third round, but the all-world prospect was not frazzled as he stuck to the game plan and broke down his opponent. Jesus Valdez is a game veteran and worthy opponent who had been in the ring with other Golden Boy prospects like Lamont Roach and Jesus Rojas. He was, however, no match for the relentless Ortiz who eventually broke him down badly in the fourth and fifth round. The fight was so one-sided that the Grand Prarie native looked to the referee on a few occasions to see if he was going to call a halt to the bout. The end finally came at the end of the fifth round when the battered fighter was not permitted to answer the bell for the next round. Ortiz was humble in his postfight statement saying “I felt like I could’ve done better,” Ortiz said of his performance in a post-fight interview with DAZN’s Chris Mannix. “It didn’t go—or end—how I wanted it to go.”

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At just 20-years-old Ortiz has his whole future in front of him, the youngster is more than a little bit ambitious saying he plans to go all the way up to 160 pounds in his career. For now, he is a threat to anyone at 140 pounds and that’s good news for fight fans as the division is loaded with talent. Ortiz says he wants to fight three or four times before culminating the year with a title shot. Perhaps that will be WBO champ Maurice Hooker in the fourth quarter of the year. Before that, an all-Texas showdown with Kendo Castaneda would be an intriguing showdown and a major step up for both young prospects. Fights with Chris Algeri and Pablo Cano would also certainly be possibilities.

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