The rumored fight between junior welterweights Nate Campbell and Victor Ortiz has been agreed to and will be televised on May 15, with the main event of that show hopefully being Amir Khan-Juan Manuel Marquez. Rick Reeno reported the deal's agreement earlier today.
Ortiz does have an upcoming fight on February 25, but his opponent Hector Alatorre is as soft a touch as could possibly be considered even remotely acceptable. Alatorre has lost eight of his last 10 fights. The bout is nothing but a TV showcase for Ortiz on Golden Boy's "Fight Night Club" series.
Campbell (33-5-1, 25 KO) has had a rough go of it since upsetting Juan Diaz in 2008. He had a defense of his lightweight titles later that year canceled when Joan Guzman couldn't make weight, which led to Campbell filing for bankruptcy. By the time he got back into the ring against Ali Funeka in February 2009, nearly a year had passed. He got out of that tough fight with a close victory, and then was getting beaten up by Timothy Bradley in August of last year before the fight had to be stopped after three rounds when Campbell suffered a bad eye injury due to an accidental headbutt.
Campbell, 37, has a lot of resolve and toughness left, but my instinct is 140 isn't the best weight for him at this stage of his career. At the same time, Ortiz has a lot of questions left to answer after his loss to Marcos Maidana last year, which was followed by a tentative December performance against veteran Antonio Diaz.
It's a big-time crossroads fight for both. Both guys have a ton to gain with the win and just as much to lose with the loss. A loss would put Ortiz in a serious hole and possibly cast him as something of another Joel Julio, while a loss for Campbell could spell the end of his days as a legitimate contender.
And it's a good fight, too. A win for either possibly puts them right into line for a title shot by the end of 2010.