Luis Ortiz wants another crack at Deontay Wilder.
The skilled Cuban heavyweight contender came up short against Wilder, the heavy hitter from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, on two separate occasions.
In their first match in 2018, Ortiz had Wilder on wobbly legs but could not sustain his advantage, eventually succumbing to a 10th-round technical knockout.
In their rematch in 2019, Ortiz, once again, appeared to be in control, out boxing Wilder for large stretches of the fight. But Wilder ended matters abruptly in the seventh round by starching Ortiz with his vaunted right hand.
Both fights were for Wilder’s WBC title. Wilder, however, lost his belt to Tyson Fury in their rematch in 2020; Wilder came up short again, to Fury, in their trilogy bout last October.
Since that time, Wilder has not re-entered the ring. He has recently hinted at a ring return but has also flirted with the idea of retiring from the sport.
In a recent interview, Ortiz, who takes on Andy Ruiz in their heavyweight bout September 4 at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, thinks the winner of his next fight may be in a position to face Wilder. All three fighters – Ortiz, Ruiz, and Wilder – are aligned with Premier Boxing Champions.
Ortiz’s longtime trainer, Herman Caicedo, indicated that he thinks Wilder could be a potential opponent for the winner of Ruiz-Ortiz, provided Wilder resumes his boxing career.
“He’s not 100% sure if PBC is lining that up,” Caicedo said of his charge in an interview with FightHype.com. “That’s what it looks like. If I had to guess, I would say probably. You never know. If I had to guess, like Luis just said, he would fight anybody. He’s a real fighter, a real old school fighter.”
Caicedo noted that Wilder is still very much on Ortiz’s mind. Ortiz was last seen in the ring in January, stopping Charles Martin in the sixth round of an entertaining slugfest. Ortiz was knocked down twice in that fight.
“At the end of the day, if they told him tomorrow to fight Wilder 40 times every week then it’s going to be every week with him and Wilder going at it," Caicedo said. "He has no whatsoever hangups of having to fight Wilder three, five, or 10 times. It’s what he does for a living and what he will do until he can be heavyweight champion of the world, which is still his main focus and his driving force to all this.”