Vergil Ortiz Jr vs David Avanesyan was reportedly all but a done deal for Aug. 6 on DAZN, an intriguing welterweight fight between a rising star and a veteran on the best run of his career, but Dan Rafael reports that the fight won’t be happening, with Ortiz’s manager Rick Mirigian says Avanesyan wouldn’t sign the deal.
From Rafael’s report:
“Golden Boy did everything they wanted, accommodated their every crazy need they asked for, and Vergil even kicked in some money to help make the fight. They agreed to the deal and then never would send the actual contract back.”
Mirigian says that Michael McKinson (22-0, 2 KO) will likely step in. The 28-year-old British southpaw was meant to fight Ortiz (18-0, 18 KO) on Mar. 19 in Los Angeles, but the fight was scrapped with Ortiz having medical issues at the time. McKinson stayed on the card and beat Alex Martin by decision.
Ortiz vs McKinson didn’t have anyone excited the first time around, and won’t now, mainly due to the style matchup. McKinson is a good, clever boxer, but has no power, and the general feeling is that even if he can fluster Ortiz a little in the early going, the 24-year-old Texan should be able to walk him down and overpower him without much trouble.
Ortiz last fought in Aug. 2021, dominating Egidijus Kavaliauskas. It was already easy to argue that Avanesyan was a step back from that (Kavaliauskas stopped Avanesyan in six back in 2018), and McKinson will definitely be seen as one, and was when that fight was originally planned.
Avanesyan (29-3-1, 17 KO) won the European welterweight title from Kerman Lejarraga in 2019, and has defended it five times. There was talk of him fighting Conor Benn in what would have been a big fight in the UK, but he instead signed with Queensberry Promotions, who had zero interesting fights to make for him up front, and have thus far delivered only Oskari Metz — maybe his weakest title defense — in March, the same day Ortiz was meant to fight McKinson.