By Steve Kim
Trainer Joseph 'Hoss' Janik is supremely confident in the work put in with Victor Ortiz the past few months as they got ready for their rematch with Andre Berto later tonight at the StubHub Center in Carson, California.
"It's probably the best camp we've had in a few years, at least. He was happy, he was having fun in the camp, We got real good sparring,"Janik told BoxingScene.com in a recent interview.
Janik listed the likes of Shane Mosley, Chris Van Heerden, Sergey Lipenets, Karl Dargan and Anthony Flores as their sparring partners.
"It was a full camp, we thought the fight was going to be a little sooner so we were actually in camp in fourteen weeks," continued Janik, who worked with Ortiz at the Knuckleheadz Gym in Ventura, California."So he's ready, he's in really good shape, now he has to just execute the game plan on Saturday night."
Back in 2011, Ortiz defeated the then undefeatd Berto in what was an entertaining slugfest, which catapulted Ortiz to a shot at Floyd Mayweather. Could it be that the mercurial Ortiz will always have Berto's number?
"I think so,"stated Janik. "Style-wise, the first fight it was no boxing match that broke out - it was a fight. So if you can win a fight like that, where you just go blow-for-blow, balls-and-heart versus balls-and-heart....if you add in a couple of spices, maybe a little better jab and some other things this time - I really don't think Berto stands a really good chance.
"I think there's a possibility for this fight to be an entertaining fight but there's a possibility for us to have a really good night and for him to have a really bad night."
For both Ortiz and Berto, this has the feel of a 'loser leaves town' match.
"Yeah, that's for both guys. We don't really talk about it in those terms. I don't like to talk about losing and what happens if we lose, I try to keep things positive in camp,"said Janik."But again, I think it applies to both sides that the loser of this fight takes a huge step backwards. So I think it's a must-win situation for both guys."
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com.