Vergil Ortiz whose star was shooting up highly before being forced out of the ring with issues pertaining to rhabdomyolysis returned from an 18-month layoff and a move up in weight. Now campaigning at 154 Ortiz (20-0 20kos) took on Fredrick Lawson (30-4 22kos) in a Golden Boy main event. Ortiz was back with previous trainer Robert Garcia Jr. This match was placed as a getback for Ortiz to shake off some ring rust and sharpen those tools. He wasn’t given that chance and it wasn’t because of a one-punch knockout.
Ortiz began moving forward and getting shots in, but towards the last minute of round one Ortiz landed a nice jab that stunned Lawson and sent him stepping back. Following some nice bodywork and a couple of shots that broke Lawson’s guard referee Tony Weeks jumped in and stopped the fight. The crowd seemed confused as to what happened, Lawson was stuck in bewilderment and Ortiz seemed anxious for more.
Yes, Lawson was hurt, but he had not taken anything to appear he was going down at that moment. The crowd erupted into boos which Ortiz for a moment believed was directed at him. Ringside reporter Beto Duran quickly let him know they weren’t aimed at him.
Ortiz was asked if he would like to fight after the fight and he said there were many he would like, but one was WBO champion Tim Tszyu. He said it with all respect, and I think that would be a great fight, it may not be next, but that could be a great one later this year.