Victor Ortiz, a controversial knockout victim at the hands of unbeaten Floyd Mayweather, began pushing the case on Monday for a chance to regain the welterweight title in a rematch. Mayweather flattened Ortiz one second before the end of the fourth round on September 17th while an unguarded Ortiz, his hands lowered after apologizing to Mayweather for a head butt, was looking at referee Joe Cortez.
"That was an unfair way to take the title from a champion," Ortiz said. "I was very, very disrespected by Floyd. I think a rematch would be perfect. To me that was not sportsmanship at all."
Mayweather, 42-0 with 26 knockouts, took the World Boxing Council title and might be looking at such foes as Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao or Britain's Amir Khan for a return to the ring in 2012 rather than face an Ortiz rematch.
"Victor apologized and Floyd punk-shotted him," said Ortiz's manager, Rolando Arellano. "He's not worthy of that title. The only way he's going to be worthy is if he gives us a rematch and beats us fair and square. If he doesn't give us a rematch his legacy will be tainted and tarred for the rest of his life."
Ortiz's camp blamed Cortez for losing control of the fight, saying Ortiz only headbutted Mayweather after Mayweather repeatedly elbowed him with no action from Cortez.
"We saw at least 10 or 15 elbows coming from Floyd during the fight and Cortez looking at the elbows in Ortiz's face," said Ortiz's promoter, Oscar De La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions. "I don't think Joe Cortez had control of that fight. He wasn't fair and he wasn't firm."
If Mayweather, who faces court hearings later this year on several charges, does not offer Ortiz a rematch, Pacquiao and Khan are on the Ortiz hit list, as is a possible rematch with US compatriot Andre Berto, who Ortiz beat in April.
Pacquiao "is one of the names I always talk about. He's definitely in the mix," Ortiz said.
Of Khan, who plans to move up to welterweight in 2012, Ortiz said, "Oh yeah, definitely. Why not?"