Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer expressed his support for Victor Ortiz in the wake of Thursday night's second-round knockout loss to Luis Collazo, which represented Ortiz's third straight stoppage defeat.
Ortiz (29-5-2, 22 knockouts), 27, was ending a 19-month ring absence against Collazo (35-5, 18 KOs) at Barclays Center in Collazo’s hometown of Brooklyn. Ortiz had last been in the ring in June of 2012, when he suffered a ninth-round stoppage loss to Josesito Lopez after which he required a two-hour surgery to repair a broken jaw.
"I am proud of Victor and what he has accomplished, and without any doubt, he will continue be accomplished whether it is in the ring or outside of the ring," said Schaefer of Ortiz, who was cast for a role in the third installment of Sylvester Stallone’s The Expendables and participated in Dancing With The Stars during his time away from the sport.
"When Victor Ortiz fights, it's must-see T.V., so whatever decision he makes, I'm fully behind him. I am not a fair weather friend. If he decides to fight, then I'm there, and if he decides not to fight, I'm there, too. The decision is his, and his only. There's no need to be influenced by anybody, and I know that Victor will be successful in whatever he puts his mind to. With his personality, he has captured the hearts of the boxing fans, and we are all cheering for him."
Ortiz has been known as an all-action fighter since June of 2009, when he was dropped twice during a 140-pound fight in which he scored three knockdowns of his own before suffering a sixth-round stoppage loss to Marcos Maidana.
Ortiz then reeled off four straight wins, three of them by stoppage, including a third-round knockout of ex-beltholder Vivian Harris in September of 2010 that followed a unanimous decision win over former titleholder Nate Campbell in May of that year.
Following a majority draw with current IBF 140-pound beltholder Lamont Peterson in December of 2010, Ortiz debuted as a 147-pounder and dethroned Andre Berto as WBC titleholder by unanimous decision. There were four knockdowns in Ortiz-Berto — two by each fighter.
In his next fight in September of 2011, however, Ortiz lost the belt by fourth-round knockout to Floyd Mayweather Jr. before facing Lopez.
"Today is Victor's birthday. He is 27 years young. I want to wish him a happy birthday. I am sure that he thought that that it would be different," said Schaefer.
"But knowing Victor, even with what happened last night, he's not going to let that impact the way that he celebrates his birthday. He is positive guy, he has a lot of positive vibes, and he always sees the glass half-full rather than half-empty."
Photo: Rich Kane/Hogaphotos