Top prospect Vergil Ortiz Jr got good work in tonight against Antonio Orozco, and in the end, he stayed perfect, stopping Orozco in the sixth round of their welterweight main event on DAZN.
The 21-year-old Ortiz (14-0, 14 KO) had home field in Grand Prairie, Texas, and though Orozco (28-2, 17 KO) gave him some good rounds and showed us that, yes, Ortiz still has some rawness to his game and some learning to do, it’s not just hype. This kid has top-level talent.
Orozco, 31, had never been stopped before, and even in his previous loss, he went 12 hard rounds with Jose Ramirez, a world champion at 140. But once Ortiz finally got to him in the sixth round, the kid was too much, dropping Orozco three times and forcing the stoppage. If there’s one thing Ortiz already has for sure, it’s that he’s a terrific finisher. This is back-to-back fights where he’s stopped good veteran fighters who had never been stopped before, following his wicked May knockout of Mauricio Herrera.
But Ortiz was very humble after the fight, not getting ahead of himself in terms of where he is.
“I don’t like the way I did in the fight,” Ortiz said. “First three or four rounds, I could have done better. I’ve definitely got a long way as a boxer to reach that world champion status.”
“I’ve been getting all these knockouts,” he continued. “I’ve said they haven’t gotten into my head, but you can see in the first round, I got a little excited. I had to force myself to slow down. I’m just going to learn from this fight.”
Joshua Franco D-10 Oscar Negrete
These two fought last October, going to a split draw. They fought again in April, with Franco winning a split decision. And now another split draw: 96-94 once for each guy, and 95-95. Franco (15-1-2, 7 KO) and Negrete (18-2-2, 7 KO) are just incredibly closely matched, and after doing this three times — all of them good fights — it’s probably time for both to move on. The 23-year-old Franco probably doesn’t want to just be known for his fights with Negrete, 32, and says he’d like to fight someone else, to go on with his career. Negrete says he thinks Franco got favorable scores at home in Texas.
Numbers-wise, you can make the case either way, probably. Negrete was busier, landing 217 of 1,018 (21%) total punches and 197 of 820 (24%) power shots. Franco was more accurate, landing 251 of 832 (30%) total and 201 of 514 (39%) power. But it’s probably time for them to separate, particularly Franco who could probably be maneuvered into at least one title fight.
Hector Tanajara Jr UD-10 Ezequiel Aviles
Pretty easy work for Tanajara (18-0, 5 KO), a 22-year-old lightweight prospect from San Antonio whose upside frankly may be a fight with Ryan Garcia at some point down the line. He’s a good, solid young boxer, but being honest nothing about him leaps off the screen when you watch him. That’s not to say that’s the end all, be all of anything — there have been some very successful fighters in recent years I kinda thought the same about, like Danny Garcia and even Mikey Garcia. Consistency can be wildly underrated, and Tanajara seems a very consistent sort even if he lacks that obvious Big Thing that would make him an even better prospect on paper.
Marcelino Lopez KO-5 Daniel Echeverria
This was basically a C-level fight on the card, and the DAZN team were pushing Lopez, a 33-year-old Argentine fringe contender (at best) pretty hard, giving me the impression someone’s got a plan for this guy soon. Lopez (36-2-1, 21 KO) has a fine KO percentage, but hits harder than even that would make you think. Echeverria (21-9, 18 KO) had some success with pit-a-pat stuff from distance, but once Lopez found him, it was over. Echeverria went down twice in the fourth round and was cracked and took the 10 count late in the fifth. It’s a fourth straight win, all by stoppage, for Lopez, who hadn’t fought since Jan. 2018 before returning with an easy fight in late June.
Travell Mazion UD-8 Jeremy Ramos
Scores were 78-73 twice and 80-71 for Mazion, an unbeaten (15-0, 12 KO) 24-year-old junior middleweight prospect. Mazion is tall (6’2”) and has potential, and Ramos (11-7, 4 KO) was the right opponent for him, a guy who wasn’t a big threat to win but can be counted on to give a young guy rounds and a scrap. Ramos was dropped in the first, but he legitimately won a couple rounds as it went on, taking advantages of the chances Mazion gave him. This was Mazion’s first fight in about 11 months as he dealt with some injury issues, and all in all this was a good comeback performance.
Alex Rincon KO-2 Joel Guevara
Guevara (4-6-1, 3 KO) is a 31-year-old club guy from West Virginia, you may recall him as the victim of Austin Williams’ pro debut on April 26. Rincon (7-0, 6 KO) basically couldn’t miss with his right hook from the southpaw stance, and the 24-year-old junior middleweight prospect battered Guevara late in the first, then dropped and finished him less than a minute into the second. Alex’s older brother George, a 27-year-old junior welterweight, fought off TV and scored a first round KO earlier on the show. Alex is an interesting prospect — tall (6’2”) at 154, southpaw, has some power, puts punches together well. He’s got a lot of steps up the ladder left to go, but he’s doing his job so far.