“The first fight was a test for me to show me where my skill level was in the heavyweight division.” –Deontay Wilder
Los Angeles – Undefeated WBC Heavyweight champion of the world Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder will once again face a stiff test when he defends his title against crafty Cuban southpaw “King Kong” Luis Ortiz. The highly anticipated heavyweight title tilt will be a rematch of their thrilling first fight, which was won by Wilder via technical knockout in March 2018.
The fight was likely the 33-year-old Wilder’s (41-0-1, 40 KOs) toughest title defence to date, as Ortiz (31-1, 26 KOs) rocked him badly in the 7th round of their first encounter, and looked close to becoming the first man to ever defeat the former US Olympian from Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
Of their first fight, Wilder said the following at Saturday’s press event in Los Angeles: “The only way for there to be a rematch was for there to be an exciting first fight. When I first met this man in the ring, it was amazing and inspiring to go up against such a skillful fighter. It was such a great experience for me and an honor for me to face him,” commented Wilder.
Wilder also made it a point to touch on the bond and mutual respect that the two fighters have forged for each other on the basis of something unexpected for two warriors in the hurt business: “I created a bond with Ortiz fighting the first time because of our daughters. We were two fathers in the ring who had to battle it out for our families. There’s no better feeling than going for war against another gladiator.”
For his part, the decorated Cuban Ortiz commented that “I’m very happy to have this opportunity at the rematch. Wilder had the courage to take the rematch and that’s a big part of why this is happening, I’m going to make the most of it.”
Regarding coming up short in their first matchup, Ortiz said “There are no excuses from, the first fight is over. Now we’re on to this fight and I’m going to get the victory. I’m not a man of many words, but the opportunity is here and it was destined to be. A true warrior doesn’t abandon his mission. My mission is to become world champion. I’ve trained very hard since my loss and it will all culminate on November 23.”
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