Deontay Wilder to defend his title against unbeaten contender Luis Ortiz

Cornelia Mascio
Gennaio 13, 2018

The fight will come nearly four months to the day that they were first supposed to meet - November 4, also at Barclays Center - but Ortiz was dropped from the fight after he tested positive for two banned diuretics.

The event is part of Premier Boxing Champions.

The Cuban boxer tested positive for a banned substance, however, pushing the fight back until 2018.

When the original fight with 38-year-old Ortiz was postponed, Wilder then defended his WBC title against fellow American Bermane Stirmane and won with a first-round knockout.

Ortiz returned on December 8 for a second-round knockout of Daniel Martz in a tune-up fight and then went nose to nose with Wilder, who was at the fight, in the ring afterward.

Wilder's title bout will be staged March 3 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the same venue where Wilder stopped Canada's Bermane Stiverne in the first round last November in the sixth defense of the crown he took from Stiverne in 2015, his three-year reign the longest in the division.

After Ortiz's victory, Wilder entered the ring and faced off with him in a colorful exchange that was captured on the FS1 telecast. So for the best to prove they're the best, the best must fight each other.

Should Wilder, 32, be victorious, the fight could serve as the final appetizer toward a much-anticipated heavyweight unification bout against England's Anthony Joshua (20-0, 20 KOs), who has quickly grown to become the biggest star in the sport.

"Stay by the phone baby, I've been wanting to", Wilder told Ortiz after the fight.

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