Old warhorse Luis Ortiz is bidding to scupper a planned Deontay Wilder vs Andy Ruiz Jr. Pay Per View on September 4.
The Cuban, on top against Wilder twice before getting knocked out on both occasions, is the last obstacle in the way.
Deontay Wilder vs Andy Ruiz Jr
Al Haymon wants to pit Wilder and Ortiz together later this year and hopes the vacant or interim WBC heavyweight titles will be at stake.
Any Las Vegas clash would be the jewel in the crown of the Premier Boxing Champions calender.
However, if Ortiz wins, Hayom will scrap those plans indefinitely. Ortiz is hoping that happens.
“I’m very grateful to be back in this position and fighting at the top level. I’m thankful to Andy for taking this fight. But I’m truly looking forward to it,” said Ortiz.
“As of right now, we’re preparing for the best Andy Ruiz. We know that he’s not just any fighter.
“He’s a former world champion. That doesn’t happen by luck. I’m ready for him and may the best man win.
“I’m very excited. The fans will see two fighters who love to battle and punch and punch hard. This is a dream come true. We’re not going to disappoint the fans on September 4.
“I got good experience from fighting Charles Martin. There were some hiccups in the fight. But I will carry the lessons I learned into this fight.
“I don’t believe there’s any advantage to the fact that I’ve been more active than Andy. I believe in hard work and the mental makeup of a fighter.
“That’s what I’ve been focusing on day after day.”
On attempting to get his world title shot at 43, Ortiz added: “My main objective right now is to win on September 4. Then after that, I’ll see who crawls out and steps up. So far, there haven’t been too many at the elite level.
“This fight is going to end in a knockout. I’m sure Andy thinks the same thing. This one isn’t going to go 12 rounds.”
Ruiz had whipped himself into fantastic shape with a new strength and conditioning coach. He’s the big favorite to win.
Tom Brown of TGB Promotions is expecting a tough fight.
“There’s nothing like a great heavyweight fight. I’ll put a great heavyweight fight up against any sporting event.
“It’s going to be a great night on Sunday, September 4. Los Angeles has always been revered as one of the most significant fight towns in the world.
“It’s been the hotspot for countless slugfests between the best fighters in the world. That’s what fans are going to get on September 4.
“Two guys with real heavyweight power.
“Andy desperately wants to be champion again, and he’s training hard to get there. He’s risking everything against a dangerous opponent in the hard-hitting slugger Ortiz.
“It’s a huge opportunity for Ortiz too. He knows his only chance is to go through Ruiz. This is going to be a night you will not want to miss.”