Victor Ortiz: Put Up or Shut Up

Jose Diaz - One year ago his smile gleamed. His vibrant reflection oozed with potential. He possessed the skills, charisma, looks, and background story coveted for superstardom. The only thing missing was a signature moment in the ring. A moment that would illuminate his star power and thrust him into the heads of the hardcore and the hearts of the casual observers.

What transpired on that cool summer evening in Los Angeles however was as close to a living nightmare as one can imagine. We witnessed the quick rise of a promising young fighter who managed to score 3 knockdowns against rugged tough man Marcos Maidana.. But what we didn't know was that we were about to witness a steeper fall, a pugilistic suicide. Victor Ortiz, unraveled that night. Rather than take the necessary leap forward, he seemed to have preferred the sidelines. He committed boxing's version of Original Sin. He quit when the going got rough.

In his first bout back from that humbling defeat, "Vicious" Victor Ortiz lacked zip. He looked weary, perhaps tentative. He eventually won by KO, but ultimately failed to deliver on the promise of overcoming his inner doubts. This Saturday on HBO, Victor Ortiz faces the challenge once again.

His opponent Nate Campbell is a veteran who has made a career out of feasting on fighters such as Ortiz. Promising talents who meet their maker. Make no mistake; Campbell will test the will and guts of Ortiz. Whether or not the young man has overcome his haunting experience from last summer, one thing is certain. He will encounter those demons once again on Saturday. Win or lose, he will be judged by how he reacts when adversity once again knocks on his door. Will he go down gunning? Or will he surrender once more?

Article posted on 14.05.2010

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