That is according to Mike Coppinger. The ESPN reporter claims Jose Ramirez was in the running for the fight, but since he pulled out of negotiations, Ortiz became the next option. Lopez is the current WBO junior welterweight champion, a belt he required after giving Josh Taylor his first loss. Attempts at defending the belt against Ryan Garcia and Subriel Matias failed. Lopez claimed he turned down $1.5 million to face Garcia because the purse did not reflect his worth as a two-weight and two-time lineal champion.
Teofimo Lopez and Jamaine Ortiz are in the process of finalizing a deal for a Feb. 8 140-pound title fight in Las Vegas, sources tell ESPN.
Fight takes place three days before Super Bowl Sunday. Jose Ramirez was first offered bout. Ortiz pushed Lomachenko to brink in 2022.
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) December 14, 2023
“When you’re the best, when you are the guy, when you bring major sponsors, endorsements, big major business deals, when you offer me a 1.5 [million dollars] stake in the piece—f–k you. So yeah I declined the offer. What’s next for me is world wide takeover, that’s what’s next. I want to go to Italy, I want to take it to other places in different ways. I got a lot of fan base in Africa, too, I want to go out there. My whole thing is taking it global because nobody else is going to help me in the boxing game no more,” Lopez said
We have also reported that a fight with Matias for February was planned. But the IBF champion withdrew due to a hand injury. Talks are still ongoing for a fight in June for the National Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend. Ortiz is a talented fighter but a lightweight, making it a challenging task to move up and face one of the best at 140. Ortiz performed well in his biggest fight against Vasiliy Lomachenko. In the first half of the fight, he troubled the Ukrainian before the three-division champion raced ahead to win a unanimous decision. Ortiz returned to victory in his next fight against Antonio Moran, but the fight with Lopez is expected to be one-sided in favor of the WBO champion.
Teo will DOMINATE Jermaine Ortiz. See a KO too.
— Señor West (@sirloinchopp) December 15, 2023
Ok? Y’all don’t get tired of one sided fights?
— 🇱🇨 Fivio Local 🇬🇾 (@its_Seanzy) December 15, 2023
I don't think so. Ortiz comes forward and likes to brawl. He will get hit and lights out!
— Hector (@HectorL0717) December 15, 2023