Golden Boy Promotions welterweight knockout artist Vergil Ortiz Jr. makes his highly-anticipated return to the ring on July 8th, facing the undefeated Lithuanian boxer Eimantas Stanionis for his WBA “regular” welterweight title. Though initially scheduled in Dallas, the rescheduled bout will now be at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas and air exclusively on DAZN.
Though Ortiz Jr. (19-0, 19 KOs) faces more challenging opponents as his career develops, his most difficult obstacle recently comes from outside the ring. The talented young fighter had to overcome setbacks caused by the lingering effects of long COVID in the form of rhabdomyolysis flare-ups twice since his post-covid fight against former light welterweight champion Maurice Hooker in March 2021.
Rhabdomyolysis is a rare but severe condition characterized by the breakdown of muscle tissue triggered by intense physical exertion and, in some cases, viral infections. Following the stoppage victory against Hooker, Vergil Ortiz Sr., father and co-trainer of Ortiz Jr., told Xicana Boxing the 25-year-old contender would still get up and train even during his COVID infection. With Ortiz Jr.’s hunger for greatness and utmost dedication to perfect his craft and stay title-fight ready, mixed with Stanionis pulling out of the fight first, it’s a possibility overtraining during the extended fight camp could trigger these flare-ups.
The rescheduled bout against Stanionis (14-0, 9 KOs) will be a thrilling 12-round clash between two promising, hard-hitting welterweight contenders looking to put the older champions on notice. Ortiz Jr., known for his explosive power and relentless attacking style, will undoubtedly look to display his skills and prove why he is considered one of the brightest talents in the division. His most recent dominant victory over UK welterweight contender Michael McKinson, also rescheduled from its first bout date due to Ortiz Jr.’s initial Rhabdomyolysis diagnosis, continued his KO streak since his pro-debut in 2016.
Stanionis, with an unblemished record of 14 wins, will present a formidable challenge. The Lithuanian fighter possesses a solid skill set and has shown an ability to adapt and overcome tough opponents, most recently capturing a split-decision victory over Radzhab Butaev (14-1, 11KOs) in April 2022. With both boxers looking to make a statement, fans can anticipate an action-packed encounter that could potentially set the winner up for a title fight against the current champions who simply cannot get their SHIT TOGETHER AND FIGHT EACH OTHER ALREADY! (*clears throat* — my apologies.)
The AT&T Center in San Antonio will provide the perfect stage for what promises to be a captivating showdown between two rising stars who will put their undefeated records on the line. Tickets will be on pre-sale starting Wednesday, May 17, with presale code: VERGIL. The general sale starts Thursday, May 18 via https://www.goldenboypromotions.com/tickets/.
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