By Chris Robinson
During a recent sit down with Big Boy’s Neighborhood on Power 106, former WBC welterweight champion Victor Ortiz discussed a myriad of topics related to his personal and professional career.
As the interview continued, Ortiz discussed his memorable bout with Floyd Mayweather in September of 2011.
In that contest, Ortiz infamously head butted Mayweather along the ropes in the fourth round, causing him to lose a point from referee Joe Cortez.
Moments later, after the action had been called back into play, Ortiz attempted to make peace with Mayweather by giving him an embrace. Mayweather accepted, only to catch an unsuspecting Ortiz with a left-right combination that floored him and ended the fight.
Reflecting back on why he ended up cracking Mayweather with his head, Ortiz offered up his side of the story.
“I’ll be honest,” Ortiz opened up. “What led up to that head butt was, I took sixteen elbows to my right eye, making it closed. Floyd does this really slick thing, where he’s throwing a hook and it looks like the hook is landing, where in reality, he’s landing the elbow.
“He started hurting me with that elbow,” added Ortiz. “I took sixteen of them.”
Ortiz revealed that in between rounds, it was his corner who actually advised him to head butt Mayweather in response.
“I went back to tell my corner at the time,” Ortiz stated. “‘He’s hitting me with that elbow; he’s hurting me. I’ve already told the ref’. They’re like
‘Do something, head butt him’. And I was like ‘That’s pretty dirty’. They’re like ‘He’s going to make you go blind if you’re not careful’. I took it in and took it right out of my mind.”
While the incidents of the Mayweather-Ortiz fight have been well-documented, very few knew of Victor’s corner telling him to deliberately head butt Floyd.
Catching up with Ortiz’s former trainer Danny Garcia, who was in his corner the night of the Mayweather fight, he refuted Ortiz’s claims.
“No, I never said that,” an adamant Garcia claimed. “I was the only one talking and I never said that.”
Garcia feels that Ortiz is simply making the incident up in his head in an effort to revise history.
“It’s something that anybody can say,” Garcia added.
Following his bout with Mayweather, Ortiz faced off with Riverside’s Josesito Lopez this past June. In a competitive fight, Ortiz would suffer a broken jaw and elected not to continue after the ninth round.
Ortiz and Garcia would part ways after the bout and while there are conflicting reports of how the break up came about, Danny stayed classy when assessing his former pupil’s future.
“I think he can still beat Josesito,” said Garcia. “I think he can come back and become champion. But he needs to focus on his job and work hard. He needs to take it serious. I think he can do it. He’s a great fighter.”
Garcia is presently in Atlantic City, New Jersey, as he will be guiding his fighter, heavyweight hopeful Magomed Abdusalamov (16-0, 16 KO’s), into battle against Victor Bisbal (21-1, 15 KO’s) in an ESPN2-televised attraction later tonight.
While the disappointment of seeing his time with Ortiz come to an end was evident, Garcia seems rejuvenated by the opportunity he has with Abdusalamov.
“He’s going to be champion of the world,” Garcia claimed. “He trains and he has a big heart. He wants to go over there and fight. He wants to beat anybody. He’s very, very hungry and he’s a very smart in the ring. I teach him a lot of things and he picks them up quick.”
*** To listen to the full video with Ortiz, where he recounts the Mayweather fight, please click HERE