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Ortiz vs Alexander: Fight preview and matchup

Victor Ortiz and Devon Alexander meet in a make-or-break matchup this Saturday.

Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Victor Ortiz

Victor Ortiz v Manuel Perez Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images

Record: 32-6-2 (25 KO) ... Streak: W1 ... Last 5: 3-2 ... Last 10: 5-4-1 ... Stance: Southpaw ... Height/Reach: 5’9” / 70” ... Age: 31

Thoughts: I have a lot of thoughts on Victor Ortiz, but let’s keep it simple. Let’s take a look at Ortiz’s last 10 fights, in chronological order:

  1. Vivian Harris (W, 2010)
  2. Lamont Peterson (D, 2010)
  3. Andre Berto (W, 2011)
  4. Floyd Mayweather (L, 2011)
  5. Josesito Lopez (L, 2012)
  6. Luis Collazo (L, 2014)
  7. Manuel Perez (W, 2014)
  8. Gilberto Sanchez Leon (W, 2015)
  9. Andre Berto (L, 2016)
  10. Saul Corral (W, 2017)

There’s one quality win here, to be real, and it was his terrific, hard-fought, action-packed, Fight of the Year in 2011 against Berto. That was, at the time, hoped to be a turning point for Ortiz, who had some hype as a prospect but was questionable in his temperament and consistency.

The win over Berto was not a turning point, it was an outlier. Since then, he’s lost to every decent opponent he’s faced, and beaten only Manuel Perez, Gilberto Sanchez Leon, and Saul Corral, a trio of journeymen.

More troubling for Ortiz is not just that he’s lost to Luis Collazo and Berto in his last two defeats, but that once the heat was on, he didn’t really look like he wanted to be there at all. Collazo is no puncher, but he made Ortiz fold in the second round.

The only question I have, as far as Ortiz goes, is whether or not it’s really a case of “he never rebounded after the Mayweather debacle and Lopez busting his jaw.” I don’t think it is. I think Victor Ortiz was always going to be this kind of fighter — goofy, flaky, wildly inconsistent, with flashes of occasional brilliance. Ol’ Facelube was never going to be a pound-for-pound list guy or a dominant champion. He had one great night, where he overcame adversity and scored a career-best win, and was able to call himself welterweight champion of the world. It crashed down after that, but he had it.

Devon Alexander

PBC on ESPN: Devon Alexander v Aron Martinez Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Record: 27-4 (14 KO) ... Streak: W1 ... Last 5: 5-0 ... Last 10: 6-4 ... Stance: Southpaw ... Height/Reach: 5’8½” / 69” ... Age: 31

Thoughts: Let’s do the same for Alexander, what the hell, why not?

  1. Timothy Bradley (L, 2011)
  2. Lucas Matthysse (W, 2011)
  3. Marcos Maidana (W, 2012)
  4. Randall Bailey (W, 2012)
  5. Lee Purdy (W, 2013)
  6. Shawn Porter (L, 2013)
  7. Jesus Soto Karass (W, 2014)
  8. Amir Khan (L, 2014)
  9. Aron Martinez (L, 2015)
  10. Walter Castillo (W, 2017)

On paper, it’s not a drastically different look than Ortiz’s run, but Alexander has never lost the way Ortiz has lost, never been stopped, never quit. (I will also throw in the opinion that Alexander was lucky to get that W over Matthysse, but it was also about seven years ago, so whatever, it’s over.)

Alexander has been “inconsistent” in terms of winning and losing, but in all reality he’s been a pretty consistent fighter. It’s just better opponents beat him — Bradley, Khan, Porter, all better. His win over Maidana was a puzzler in retrospect, as Maidana was simply awful that night, and Alexander was really sharp, and Maidana would then go on to give Floyd Mayweather relatively tough evenings. Go figure. Styles really make fights, etc.

The Aron Martinez fight was the outlier for Alexander, as he was beaten by a guy he really should have handled. It was a true off-night for Alexander, and the judges wound up getting it right, something of a surprise to many of us watching that night.

Alexander looked pretty much the same as ever in his last outing, back in decent form against Walter Castillo. Ortiz is a different challenge — well, maybe.

Matchup Grade: ?????. If you’re telling me you know what the hell to expect from a Victor Ortiz fight in 2018, then good on you.


  • Caleb Plant vs Rogelio Medina: A really good step-up matchup for Plant (16-0, 10 KO), a stylish super middleweight prospect who has been featured on a number of PBC shows. Medina (38-8, 32 KO) can punch, and he’s a rough customer who knocked out J’Leon Love in 2014, gave James DeGale a fight in 2016, and kept coming into the jaws of hell against David Benavidez in 2017. Matchup Grade: B

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