Fight News: One-punch Wilder, Mayweather un-retires, UFC announcements and more
All the latest combat news from around the fight world.
All the latest combat news from around the fight world.
Deontay Wilder powers through Luis Ortiz rematch
Just when you think the WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder’s power couldn’t be more impressive, he goes and obliterates Luis Ortiz with a one-punch KO in the seventh round. One, almighty, punch. Just like he predicted:
This fight will not go the distance. As I said before, get your popcorn, get your pizza, go to the bathroom, make sure you get by somebody who won't be able to disturb you, you know, don't drop your cell phone, put it in your pockets, 'cause you don't want to be the person that dropped it and look up and say 'What happened?' These guys have to be perfect for twelve rounds, I only have to be perfect for two seconds and in the blink of an eye: bam, baby, goodnight!
Heading into the fight, Ortiz weighed in at a lean - for him anyway - 236.5 pounds, looking as good as he ever has. He was also a full 17 pounds heavier than Wilder, who tipped the scales at just 219.5 pounds. But Wilder's always been the lighter man so there were no surprises there.
What was surprising was Ortiz racing ahead on the scorecards, with Wilder apparently so respectful of the Cuban’s power he didn’t seem keen on engaging. That is until he cocked the right hand and blasted Ortiz square in the face from point-blank range. And then came the good news immediately after the win:
Next, of course, we have the rematch with Tyson Fury. The schedule is set to be done in February so we will see how that goes.
And what did the lineal champ who somehow survived two Wilder knockdowns have to say about that?
Wilder has nothing more than a puncher’s chance vs me. I’m gonna school him even more than the first fight. Hashtag BUM CITY.
We cannot wait.
Floyd Mayweather plans a return to boxing in 2020
In the other far less exciting boxing news of the week, Floyd Mayweather Jr. made an attempt at stealing Wilder’s thunder with the following Twitter announcement: “Coming out of retirement in 2020”.
While the lineup of potential dream opponents includes Errol Spence, Terence Crawford, Canelo Alvarez, and of course Manny Pacquiao, fans shouldn’t get their hopes up.
Mayweather, who has already retired three times, hasn’t competed professionally since his financial mega-success against the former MMA champ Conor McGregor - a man with no professional boxing experience.
If that’s the sort of fighter the undefeated Mayweather is coming out of retirement for, don’t expect any of the current boxing champs to be his first choice.
Nong-O retains ONE's Muay Thai bantamweight title
In other far more exciting news, Nong-O Gaiyanghadao has retained the ONE Championship Muay Thai bantamweight belt with a 4 round demolishing of fellow Thai fighter Saemapetch Fairtex.
After a back-and-forth first round, Nong-O really turned it on at the end of the second with a barrage of heavy combinations. Two hard right uppercuts had Fairtex hearing the bell from face down on the canvas. The brave challenger got back to his feet and survived a further pummeling until the fourth when Nong-O sent a right hand straight down the pipe, a la Deontay Wilder, and it was goodnight Irene.
Watching the replay, it’s easy to imagine The Bronze Bomber smiling his approval at the Thai fighter’s style.
In the co-main event, Singapore's Amir Khan escaped with a split decision victory over Ev Ting, despite clearly breaking Ting’s nose with a cracking elbow in the first round. Bleeding everywhere, Ting turned up the aggression, continually pressuring forward until the very end but he simply couldn’t overcome the optics and the judges awarded Khan the win.
UFC announces big fight plans for 2020
And in the UFC, promotion President Dana White has made some big fight announcements.
First up, the light heavyweight champ Jon Jones is facing the surging prospect Dominick Reyes this February 8th and we couldn’t be happier. The Devastator is undefeated from 12 starts and he’s already notched up wins over two title contenders.
Having said that, Jones is about as good as anyone has ever been so Reyes has his work cut out for him.
And the other big announcement is that a lightweight championship bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson is being targeted for April, but again, don’t get your hopes up.
If the deal gets done, it will be the fifth time they’ve been scheduled to fight in four years. Nurmagomedov pulled out in 2015 and 2017 due to injury and weight issues. Ferguson pulled out in 2016 and 2018 due to injuries. Still, it’s the fight the fans want and for good reason.
Khabib’s stellar record of 28 and 0 includes 12 straight wins in the UFC with two defences of the lightweight title. El Cucuy is also on a 12 fight win streak, and the former interim champ has been waiting for his shot at the full title since 2017. It’s high time he got it.
Bellator 235 saw Michael “Venom” Page add another body to the pile of hopelessly outclassed opponents the promotion insists on slinging his way. This time it was Giovanni Melillo.
In her third crack at the Glory super bantamweight kickboxing title, Tiffany van Soest finally outpointed the champ Anissa Meksen at Glory 71.
And the next night at Glory 72, the featherweight champ Petchpanomrung Kiatmookao retained the title but only with a majority draw against Kevin Van Nostrand.
And in the boxing, Leo Santa Cruz claimed a title in his fourth division, Marie-Eve Dicaire retained with a decision, as did Callum Smith with the help of some questionable scorecards. But fight of the weekend went to Brandon Figueroa and Julio Ceja’s 12 round majority draw war.