Luis Ortiz and Charles Martin are headed for a January 1 showdown!
While still unofficial, it appears that heavyweights Luis “King Kong” Ortiz (32-2, 27 KO’s) and “Prince” Charles Martin (28-2-1, 25 KO’s) have agreed to fight. If everything goes as planned, the two will square-off on January 1 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino located in Miami, Florida. It will be good for both men to get back in the ring as each has been acutely inactive. By the time of the fight, Martin will have remained out of action for nearly two full years. In his last prizefight, Prince bested veteran Gerald Washington by way of sixth round stoppage.
Technically, Ortiz has been in the ring more recently than Martin. On November 7, 2020 King Kong obliterated Alexander Flores in a first round destruction. Since that time, Ortiz all but vanished into mist. So this upcoming duel will be good for both men who still harbor desires to be champions in their hearts. Ultimately though, this is a worthwhile dustup with Ortiz being ranked #4 (WBC), #7 (WBO) and #10 (IBF) and Martin being ranked #2 (IBF) and #15 (WBC).
A LOT ON THE LINE
The bout does have something of a crossroads feel about it. This is due to each man drifting further and further into irrelevancy. Martin’s biggest claim to fame is winning the vacant IBF heavyweight title. He attained the title after Vyacheslav Glazkov suffered a third round knee injury and could not continue well back on January 16, 2016. Martin was immediately roughed up and stopped in his very next fight with former unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua. Since that time, Martin has not been that big of a force or name in the division.
Ortiz’s problem is a bit different. In his case, everyone knows about the big, technically sound southpaw with great pop in his punch. Everyone also knows he’s very dangerous. The trouble with King Kong is that no one seems to want to fight him. Deontay Wilder graced him with two high profile bouts, which Ortiz lost both by KO, but no other top heavyweights have wanted to pen a bout with him. This has left the Cuban stranded in something of a frustrating limbo for quite some time. For all these reasons, it’s of the utmost importance that both men aim to shine on January 1!
By: Bakari Simpson