LAS VEGAS — Mayweather Promotions CEO Leonard Ellerbe has already invited Robert Garcia and WBA lightweight champion Brandon Rios, whom Garcia trains, to be at ringside and perhaps to join Floyd Mayweather Jr. during the challenger’s ring walk for Saturday night’s clash against WBC welterweight titleholder Victor Ortiz at the MGM Grand.
Robert Garcia has an adversarial relationship with his brother, Danny Garcia, who trains Ortiz, who, likewise, does not get along with Rios.
Now, it appears that Ellerbe might encourage the titleholder’s estranged father, Victor Ortiz Sr., to attend the fight as well.
“You never know. We’ve got a lot of surprises for him,” said Ellerbe. “We’re working on a lot of things.”
Ortiz’s widely-reported background details his being born the second of three children to Mexican immigrants in Garden City, Kan., and being just 7 years old when his mother left, and 13 when his alcoholic father did the same.
Ortiz, now 24, recently met the woman who abandoned him. And with absolutely zero malice in his heart, he absolved her completely of blame.
But Ortiz never has reconciled with his father, even removing a tattoo of his own last name from his back as a means of removing his father’s claim to him.
“Victor could look around the arena and see a lot of people from his past,” said Ellerbe. “Victor could see anybody from his past. And that’s the truth”
Ellerbe told several reporters on Wednesday “not to be surprised” if Garcia and Rios wind up in the ring.
The 38-year-old Robert Garcia has a strained relationship with his 44-year-old brother Danny Garcia, who shares a back yard with Robert in their Oxnard, Calif., neighborhood.
They have not spoken to each other for years.
The brothers are involved in an ongoing, jealousy-laced blood feud that has caused deep wounds within their immediate family and beyond, a reality that boiled over when they confronted one another last month over separate online videos in which they were critical of one another and their fighters.
The feud began over Ortiz, who worked with Robert Garcia from the time he was a promising 16-year-old amateur through the first four years of his pro career.
“I told Brandon that Mayweather invited us. And he said ‘yes, okay, let’s go. It’s a great fight and I want to go,’” said Robert Garcia.
“I’ve never felt this way or said this about any other fighter, but I do want to see Victor Ortiz get his a– kicked by Floyd Mayweather. I just want to see him get his f–king a– kicked. I just want to see that.”
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com