By Edward Chaykovsky
On Monday, it was officially announced that Luis Ortiz (25-0, 22KOs) would be returning to the ring on November 12 at Salle des Etoiles, Sporting Monte-Carlo in Monaco. Ortiz will face veteran Malik Scott for the WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title.
The fight will be first for Ortiz with brand new promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Sport.
Ortiz, known in boxing circles as 'King Kong,' was previously promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and decided to break ties with their company. His handlers bought out his contract and he became a free agent.
Hearn realizes that there are some issues. While Ortiz is a very good fighter, there will be problems securing top opponents because there isn't a lot of money on the table to get in the ring with him.
Hearn has put together a plan to move Ortiz's career forward at a rapid pace, with a huge fight being planned for next summer. The first step in the card in Monaco, following a return on the undercard to Anthony Joshua's next title defense, which is going to be on November 26th or December 10th. Then a fight in the United States in early 2017, and then the big summer dance.
"They came to me probably four weeks ago. They had just got out of their Golden Boy contract and they wanted me to promote them. I had sort of been thinking about it and then the Monaco opportunity had come up. I was speaking to them about it and they would love to have Ortiz there. I think with the landscape at the moment, Luis Ortiz can be a real player," Hearn told IFL TV.
"The problem with Luis Ortiz is that he's bloody good and dangerous, but no one knows who he is outside of boxing. They know that I can raise his profile to get those big fights. The plan is, to box him on the card against Malik Scott, probably box him on the AJ card, and then box him...... we'll probably do a show in the States out in February - and then by next summer he'll be ready to go - whether that's against Joshua, whether that's against Fury, whether that's against Haye, or the WBO champion or whoever is there. But that's when he'll have the profile."
"Guys wont fight Ortiz because there is no money in it. Once there is money it, they will fight Ortiz. That's a big, good dangerous fighter. I look forward to it and I think that will open up a lot of doors for us as well."