By Eric Thomas: Former WBC welterweight champion Victor Ortiz (29-4-2, 22 KO’s) will face Alfonso Gomez (22-5-2, 11 KO’s) on the December 14th Showtime at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Ortiz was supposed to have been fighting IBF junior middleweight champion Carlos Molina, but the International Boxing Federation refused to sanction the fight because Ortiz wasn’t ranked in the top 15 at 154, was coming off of two knockout losses, and hadn’t fought in a year and a half.
Ortiz-Gomez isn’t as interesting a fight than the Ortiz-Molina match-up, but that’s the best that Golden Boy Promotions could get under the circumstances. Ortiz is coming off of a broken jaw he suffered in his last fight against Josesito Lopez last year in June, and Golden Boy doesn’t want to match him too tough yet before he’s had a chance to get the rust out of his system from his time off.
The 33-year-old Gomez has lost his last two fights against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Shawn Porter. Gomez fought only once last year in losing to Porter by a 10 round unanimous decision, and he hasn’t fought at all this year. By the time that Gomez enters the ring to face Ortiz in December, it’ll have been a year and a half since Gomez last fight. That makes him perfect for Ortiz and for Golden Boy, because they clearly don’t want Ortiz to get beaten. The word is that they’re hoping to eventually match Ortiz up against Canelo in 2014. It’s just too bad that Ortiz was unable to get the fight against Molina because that would have put Ortiz in the position to capture the IBF title and then use it as bait for a Canelo mega-fight on PPV.
Ortiz’s career has taken a hit since his 4th round stoppage loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in September 2011. Ortiz didn’t give a good account of himself in that fight with the way that he was dominated and eventually stopped by Mayweather. Ortiz’s fight against Lopez was supposed to have been a tune-up fight to get Ortiz ready for a big money fight against Canelo, but Ortiz suffered a broken jaw that led to the fight being halted after the 9th round. Even without the injury, it looked like Ortiz was going to have to rally if he wanted to win the fight against Lopez. Could Ortiz have done this? It’s hard to say because he didn’t look like he was mentally prepared for the fight to be as tough as it ended up being.
The Broner-Maidana fight card also has WBA interim welterweight champion Keith Thurman facing Jesus Soto Karass, WBA light heavyweight champion Beibut Shumenov defending his title against Tamas Kovacs, and junior middleweight champion Alfredo Angulo facing Jorge Melendez.