By Francisco Salazar

Lucas Matthysse has a penchant for fighting the most dangerous punchers in the sport.

Whether they are unbeaten or not, Matthysse brings out the best in them. Then again, Matthysse imposes his strength and will, finding a way to grind out a win.

He is in for another tough fight when he faces another unbeaten and hard-hitting fighter on Saturday night, when he faces Roberto Ortiz in a 12 round bout at the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The bout will precede the main event bout between Adrien Broner and Emmanuel Taylor and will be televised live on Showtime, beginning at 9:30 p.m. ET/ 6:30 p.m. PT.

Matthysse looked like he was in over his head in his last fight on April 26 in Carson, Calif. Matthysse found himself on the canvas twice, courtesy of knockdowns from hard-hitting John Molina. Dealing with a cut over his left eye, Matthysse was able to weather the storm, dropping Molina down in the eighth and 10th rounds before the bout was stopped a round later and the Argentine was declared the winner.

“It was a great fight against Molina,” acknowledged Matthysse, who turns 32 in three weeks’ time. “That was a fight of the year candidate type of bout.”

Now he has his eyes set on Ortiz, the hard-hitting Mexican who will be fighting for the first time in the United States after having fought all of his bouts in Mexico.

Ortiz (31-0-1, 24 KOs) stopped Ramiro Alcaraz in the fifth round of his last fight on April 12 in Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico. He has notable wins over Antonio Lozada Jr., Fidel Monterrosa Munoz, and most recently, against Reyes Sanchez.

The 28-year-old Mexican will have a two-and-a-half inch height advantage over Matthysse and one would think less wear and tear than his opponent.

Although he is confident, Matthysse is not taking Ortiz lightly, especially when it has come to light Adrien Broner has stated his next fight after September 6 would be against him.

“He (Ortiz) is a good fighter. I’m sure he is coming into this fight well-prepared. But we also trained very well for this fight and we are ready. I’m going to see what he brings (to the fight). It is going to be a great fight.”

According to Matthysse, he can still make 140 pounds. It will be interesting to see whether a rematch can be made between him and Danny Garcia.

Last month, Garcia knocked out Rod Salka and weighed in above the 140-pound limit, leading to speculation he may move up to the welterweight limit for his next fight. 

While Matthysse is interested in a rematch against Garcia, it is not something he is holding his breath will happen. Instead, he has learned from the loss and is open to fighting anyone at 140 pounds, with an eventual move to welterweight in the near future.

“You always learn from a loss. I learned a lot from the Garcia fight. Now, I move forward and want the best fights out there. Maybe even next year, we will look at moving up to 147 pounds.”

“I’m eager to return to the United States again to fight for a world title.”

Francisco A. Salazar has written for since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. He also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper, RingTV, and Knockout Nation. Salazar can be reached by email at or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing