’m not sure undefeated Floyd Mayweather (41-0, 25 KOS) will meet his match when he takes on WBC Welterweight Champion Victor Ortiz (29-2-1, 22 KOs) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Sept. 17, but Ortiz has as much chance as anybody at handing Mayweather his first loss.

It’ll be Mayweather’s first fight since beating Shane Mosley by a one-sided unanimous decision last year and Ortiz’s second as a welterweight after beating Andre Berto for the title by a close unanimous decision in April. With an endless string of court dates coming up, the 34-year-old Mayweather may be more interested in the money he’ll make in the pay-per-view fight than he is in keeping his record intact.

But most boxing experts figure he shouldn’t have a problem with Ortiz and might endear himself to boxing fans around the world by taking on a young, tough slugger. Ortiz doesn’t have anything to lose really. If he enters the ring with the right attitude and lets his fists fly from the opening bell we could be in for a decent fight.

Ortiz has been involved in some exciting slugfests over the past few years and that means he isn’t the hardest target to hit. He’s shown a lot of determination and heart in most of his bouts, but has been sent to the canvas on several occasions. He’s going to have to absorb some punishment against Mayweather and if he can stay on his feet he has a puncher’s chance of winning. He’s not going to outbox Mayweather and would have to drop him a few times if he has any hope of taking a points decision.

This more or less leaves one option for the 24-year-old, which is to knock Mayweather out. He should take some confidence into the ring with him considering that Mosley rocked Mayweather in the second round of their fight last year and had him hurt. Ortiz is probably a harder puncher than Mosley and he won’t let him off the hook if he hurts him. But the problem for Ortiz could be landing a clean, solid blow.

Ortiz will go into the fight as the underdog, but it won’t bother him considering he’s had a pretty tough life so far after being abandoned years ago by his parents. However, he did disappoint many fans in 2009 in his loss to Marcos Maidana when he seemingly gave up in the ring. Ortiz and Maidana traded knockdowns in that fight and it looked like it was going to be the fight of the year until Ortiz quit after suffering another knockdown.

He showed a lot of heart and determination when beating Berto for the title in his first bout as a welterweight and picked himself up from the canvas twice to do so. He also dropped Berto a few times along the way and that’s what makes Ortiz so exciting. He’s always in every fight because he has the power to turn them around with a single shot.

Mayweather has a lot more experience in big fights and he’s a natural welterweight, but once the bell rings those advantages should be thrown out the window unless Ortiz freezes like a deer in the headlights. Ortiz’s southpaw stance could give Mayweather some trouble and he’s young, fast, and strong. But his chin is still pretty questionable. If Mayweather catches him with one of his powerful left hooks it could be lights out.

As much as I’d love to see Ortiz hand Mayweather his first loss, I think he’s going to eventually get caught and will be stopped in the second half of the fight.


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