As most fight fans already know, former welterweight world champions Victor Ortiz (31-5-2 24KO’s) and Andre Berto (30-4 23KO’s) will be facing each other in an enticing rematch on Saturday, live on Fox 8pmEt/5pmPT from the StubHub Center in Carson California.
Victor Ortiz was considered to be a blue chip prospect early in his career and was even voted prospect of the year in 2008 by ESPN. He was getting rid of formidable foes like Carlos Maussa and Mike Arnoutis with ease and displaying high-level skill/technique as well as athleticism explosiveness and punching power in both hands. To top all of it off, Ortiz is a southpaw and seemed like the complete package coming up the 140lb rankings as a prospect/contender. However, on June 27th, 2009 many people’s opinions on Victor Ortiz changed when he suffered TKO loss to then unknown super lightweight contender Marcos Maidana. Many fans and pundits didn’t like the way in which he quit in that fight and the things he said afterwards in the post-fight interview about not knowing if he should be getting beat up like that. After that devastating loss, Victor managed to bounce back four straight wins and a draw with Lamont Peterson. He then got a title shot against then undefeated reigning WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto. Ortiz decided to jump up to welterweight and take on the challenge.
Both fighters ended up putting forth respectful performances on April 16th, 2011 with Victor Ortiz coming out the winner in an explosive battle and redeeming himself in the process from the Maidana loss in most people eyes. Since that fight, Victor Ortiz’s boxing career has had its share of up’s and downs, to say the least, and he’s looking to capture glory once again and get back in the welterweight mix. Ortiz stands at 5’9 in height and possesses a 70-inch reach. He has good technique and decent hand speed. He possesses great punching power in both hands and has mostly all the physical attributes a fighter would want to have. Ortiz’s problems are mental, which make him very unpredictable and inconsistent but fun to watch.
Andre Berto, on the other hand, has also had a similar past in the sense that he was viewed as a blue chip prospect by many fans and journalists and was getting a huge push from HBO getting excellent money to fight mediocre opposition and tune up fights. After being continuously showcased on HBO as a prospect/contender, Berto ended up getting a title shot at the vacant WBC Welterweight title against Miguel Angel Rodriguez. After winning his title, Andre managed to defend his title five times before losing to Victor Ortiz in their exciting battle back in 2011. Berto stands at 5’6 ½ and has a 68 ½ inch reach. He’s an extremely compact and muscular welterweight and is explosive.
The Florida-born fighter also has great hand speed. However, though he has possessed heart and courage in the past, he seems to lack fighting I.Q. Though Andre Berto has a stocky built for a welterweight, he appears to prefer to fight from a distance than on the inside.
The outcome of this matchup can easily go either way mainly because of Ortiz’s inconsistency. Ortiz has the better skill set and is the better overall fighter. But if Victor is not on his (A) game and doesn’t show up willing to go through hell to win then Berto can easily win the fight. However, one thing regarding this fight is guaranteed, and that’s explosive action, and I can’t wait to see it!