Floyd Mayweather To Fight Victor Ortiz in September

June 7, 2011

After a 16-month layoff, elite pound-for-pound boxing superstar Floyd Mayweather Junior has announced that he will return to the ring on Saturday, September 17, to face the hard-hitting current WBC welterweight champion "Vicious" Victor Ortiz.

Ortiz earned his belt with a career-defining, action-packed win over former welterweight champ Andre Berto. Prior to that Berto bout, Ortiz's career had stalled with a series of uninspiring performances at junior welterweight, including a recent lackluster draw over Lamont Peterson.

However, Ortiz's move to 147, coupled with the more disciplined, aggressive, and determined approach that he showed in the Berto fight, now makes his matchup with Mayweather interesting.

Ortiz has good hand speed, boxing skills, and knockout power that translates at 147 pounds. Given his newfound pressure style, southpaw stance, and youth, he represents a legitimate challenge to Mayweather, who undoubtedly will be dealing with some degree of ring rust come September.

"I respect Mayweather because he has been a champion for many years and I know he will be ready, but so will I," said Ortiz. "I'm a strong fighter and I have worked really hard to silence my critics. I'm a world champion for a reason and I am not going to let go of my title any time soon. This is going to be a great fight, but I will remain a world champion for many years to come."

Nevertheless, Mayweather is the premiere defensive fighter in the sport and will be the superior athlete in the ring, so there is no doubt that he will be the heavy betting favorite. When one considers that Ortiz is still honing his craft and has a questionable chin, he could be quite vulnerable to "Money May's" outstanding counterpunching ability.

The fight will take place on Mexican Independence Day weekend, making Mayweather's selection of Ortiz as his opponent even more relevant in terms of potential revenue and pay-per-view buys.

"I am ready to return to the ring and give my fans a fantastic night of boxing by fighting the best out there and for me, that is Victor Ortiz," said Mayweather. "He is the current champion and an extremely talented fighter who showed amazing skills, and heart, in his last performance against Andre Berto. At this stage of my career, these are the challenges I look for, a young, strong, rising star looking to make his mark in boxing by beating me. I commend him for accepting the fight, but on September 17, Ortiz is just going to be another casualty, the 42nd one who tried and failed. Trust me, I will be ready."

For boxing fans, this fight is great news on multiple levels. Not only is it a quality matchup, but it also keeps open the possibility of a Manny Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather megafight in 2012.

Of course, Victor Ortiz might have something to say about that.

By Mike Elliott
Staff Editor for TheDailySportsHerald.com

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