In accordance with an earlier report by RingTV.com, former welterweight titleholders Victor Ortiz and Luis Collazo will meet in a clash of southpaws at Barclays Center in Collazo’s hometown of Brooklyn on Jan. 30. The bout will be televised on Fox Sports 1.
Ortiz-Collazo will take place three days before the NFL’s Super Bowl, which will be held on Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., less than an hour drive from Brooklyn.
Ortiz (29-4-2, 22 knockouts), who is 26, will be ending a 19-month ring absence, having been cast for a role in the third installment of Sylvester Stallone’s The Expendables and Dancing With The Stars.
Ortiz was to be on this past Saturday’s card whose main event boasted Marcos Maidana‘s unanimous decision that dethroned Adrien Broner before his scheduled opponent, Alfonso Gomez, suffered a hand injury and had to pull out of the fight.
Ortiz and Collazo (34-5, 17 KOs) were in attendance at a press conference at Barclays Center earlier this month.
“I was in the gym hitting the bags with mettle plates in my mouth and my mouth wired shut four days after the injuries,” said Ortiz, referring to his right jaw.
“The doctor said, ‘Don’t make your heart pump when you’re like this.’ He said, ‘Just trust me.’ I ignored him of course. I went into the ring. Eight, nine, 10 rounds later, I’m like, I was gushing blood in my mouth, and I was like, ‘Oh, I get it.'”
Following a majority draw with current IBF 140-pounder beltholder Lamont Peterson in 2010, Ortiz debuted as a 147-pounder and dethroned Andre Berto as WBC titleholder by unanimous decision. There were four knockdowns in Ortiz-Berto — two by each fighter.
In his next fight in September of 2011, however, Ortiz lost the belt by fourth-round knockout to Floyd Mayweather Jr. before facing Lopez.
Collazo, 32, has gone 3-0 with one knockout, with all of those bouts having taken place at Barclays Center, since falling by 10-round unanimous decision to Freddy Hernandez, who dropped him in the eighth round in October of 2011. In his last fight, Collazo scored a unanimous 10-round decision over Alan Sanchez in Texas.
“My main thing is to go in there and to frustrate him and to touch that jaw. I haven’t taken any time off,” said Collazo, “He’s taken some time off, and I hope that he’s able to go to work. This fight is going to define my future, especially here in Brooklyn in my home town. I’m not going to lose in Brooklyn. Not at home.”
Like Collazo, Gomez will be making his fourth appearance at Barclays when he meets Arnett, whom he defeated as an amateur.
“It was 2007 in Kansas City. I think that it was a semifinal fight in a championship tournament. We fought, and he had the same attitude that he possesses now. Cocky. He liked to talk a lot. I went in there, knocked him down three times. I got the victory,” said Gomez.
“So that’s what happened. This is my fourth time here. I opened up the first night, so a loss me here? That’s not going to happen. This is my home, so when you fight me here, you’re walking through the valley of an area I’m very familiar with, and where I’m used to winning.”
Video by Bill Emes
Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]