Undefeated heavyweight Luis Ortiz of Miami via Cuba will put his record of 20-0 with 17 knockouts on the line when he takes on journeyman Monte Barrett of Queens, N.Y. on Thursday in the main event at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio (on Fox Sports 1).
Barrett, 42, is 35-10-2 with 20 knockouts. Ortiz is 35, but only turned pro four years ago.
Dominic Breazeale (9-0, 9 KOs), a 2012 U.S. Olympian out of Alhambra, will square off with Nagy Aguilera (19-7, 13 KOs) of the Dominican Republic in a heavyweight bout scheduled for eight rounds on the undercard.
Promoter Bob Arum is staging the April 12 rematch between Timothy Bradley and Manny Pacquiao at MGM Grand in Las Vegas (on HBO pay-per-view). Their first fight – in June 2012 at the same place – ended in controversy when Bradley was judged a split-decision winner over Pacquiao in a fight Pacquiao appeared to have won by as many as four points.
Arum recently was asked if this rematch coming later rather than sooner was a good thing. Both fighters have had two fights since that first go-round.
“Because of the controversy in the first fight, if we had done an immediate rematch I think most of the time being spent by the media would have been on ‘Was the first fight fixed?’ therefore getting a second fight, and now you don’t hear any of that because obviously the fighters went on to do their thing against other opponents. Now we have a great fight and there is no adverse commentary as to any kind of manipulation in the first fight.”
Pacquiao, 35, is 55-5-2 with 38 knockouts. Bradley, 30, is 31-0 with 12 knockouts.