By Dan Ambrose: Oscar De La Hoya says he views IBF/WBA/WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr as a “much easier” opponent than undefeated Vergil Ortiz Jr over Terence Crawford.
De La Hoya stated that 2023 will be Vergil’s “coming out party” and his big year. The only way this happens is if Spence & Crawford go back to 154 because Vergil won’t beat either of those guys.
Given how Vergil Jr was injured in his most recent fight against Egidijus Kavaliauskas, it will be a cakewalk for the undefeated Spence (28-0, 22 KOs) to take him out.
With the 35-year-old Crawford only fighting once a year and about to move up to 154, his chances of fighting Vergil Jr are almost non-existent. It won’t happen unless Ortiz moves up to 154 and becomes popular quickly.
Vergil’s recent achievements:
- Michael McKinson
- Egidijus Kavaliuskas
- Maurice Hooker
- Samuel Vargas
- Brad Solomon
- Antonio Orozco
- Mauricio Herrera
You could argue that Conor Benn is more famous than Vergil Jr, even with two drug tests.
The 24-year-old Ortiz Jr. (19-0, 19 KOs) has compiled an undefeated record, mostly against lesser-powered opponents and fighters.
At first, many boxing fans were excited about Vergil Jr’s future potential. However, with the slow moving Golden Boy, he failed to become a big name in the welterweight division.
People want to see Vergil Jr finally facing a living body like Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis, but that seems unlikely. But at least if Ortiz takes on a fighter like Ennis, the fans will see if it’s for real or not.
If Vergil Jr got machine-gunned by Ennis with a quick combo, so be it, but at least he could say he tried.
“The fighters out there, they don’t want to fight the Golden Boy fighters,” Oscar De La Hoya told Fighthype. “So what are we going to do? We made them #1 contenders like Bivol vs. Zurdo. We pushed him; We pushed it, we pushed it, and now it’s happening next week.
“Of course, Vergil [Ortiz jr] is in this position. I would like both for Vergil,” said De La Hoya when asked who would be the most likely choice for Vergil Ortiz Jr between Errol Spence Jr and Terence Crawford.
“I believe Spence is the easiest fight for Vergil. Crawford, I’m telling you, he’s very tactical, he knows how to move, and he’s very aggressive, but all of these fights are doable.
“Quickly, in a heartbeat,” said De La Hoya when asked if he would fight Vergil Ortiz vs. Crawford if given the chance. “I’m telling you, Vergil is the best 147-pounder out there.
“We’re working on something for Vergil soon. We’ll have an announcement. We’re excited about it. Next year is going to be a big year, his coming out party. No one can run away from him.
“I haven’t seen him fight, but I heard he’s great,” De La Hoya said of Jaron ‘Boots’ Enis. “Of course, he won the world championship, in the end, they were [Boots Ennis and Vergil] they will meet
“Actually, it was a good fight. It will be a good test,” said De La Hoya about Crawford fighting David Avanesyan on December 10. “I like the fight, actually, but you run the risk of a head-mouth or a cut, a broken arm.
“Next year is going to be a big year for all the Golden Boy and Golden Boy fighters. It’s going to be a big year,” said De La Hoya.