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Vergil Ortiz Jr speaks after pulling out of Saturday’s fight

Image: Vergil Ortiz Jr speaks after pulling out of Saturday's fight

By Dan Ambrose: Rising welterweight star Vergil Ortiz Jr spoke for the first time just hours ago following his decision to pull out of Saturday’s fight against Michael McKinson following being diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis.

The 23-year-old Ortiz (18-0, 18 KOs) had been scheduled to fight in the main event on a Golden Boy card against the unbeaten British fighter McKinson (26-0, 2 KOs) on DAZN at the Galen Center in Los Angeles, California

“Sorry to my fans, friends, and family. We will be back soon,” said Vergil Jr. on Instagram in sending a message to his supporters

There’s no word yet whether Ortiz Jr. will attempt to reschedule the fight with the 27-year-old McKinson or if this is it.

After being hospitalized from Monday to Tuesday with Rrhabdomyolysis, the decision was made for Ortiz to pull out of the contest with McKinson. It was noticeable that Vergil didn’t look well recently in his last interview.

Given the huge advantage that Vergil had over the light-hitting McKinson, he probably could have still beat the British fighter even at less than 100%, but it would have been difficult to catch up to him because he moves nonstop and is a crafty fighter.

It might be a good idea for Vergil to consider moving up in weight to 154 so that he doesn’t need to put his body through this hardship of draining down to 147 each time he competes.

If this condition continues to happen due to Ortiz putting his body through hell to try and meltdown to a division that he physically can’t support due to his large frame, he should move up to 154.

With Ortiz’s punching power, work rate, youth, and frame, he should be able to compete against the top fighters at junior middleweight like Jermell Charlo and Brian Castano.

This problem for Vergil comes at a bad time because he and his promoter Oscar De La Hoya were talking of getting a title shot against one of the welterweight champions in October, November, or December.


Image: Vergil Ortiz Jr speaks after pulling out of Saturday's fight

If Ortiz Jr. chooses to stay at welterweight, he’s probably going to need to wait until 2023 for him to get a title shot, and maybe even 2024. Again, if Ortiz can’t safely make the 147 any longer then he needs to move up to junior middleweight.



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