Vergil Ortiz Jr. Happy To Be Back After Major Health Scare

Vergil Ortiz Jr. recalled being in tears as he feared for his career after collapsing before his fight with Michael McKinson

The initial suggestion was that Ortiz had rhabdomyolysis. This condition can damage the body’s muscle tissues, no longer making them operate optimally, leading to potential heart or kidney problems. It came at a time when Ortiz’s career was on an upward trajectory. He is undefeated, with a record of 19-0, and has stopped all his opponents. He joins Artur Beterbiev in having a 100 percent knockout rate.

It turned out Ortiz’s issues were with making welterweight. He could no longer make 147. That same issue cropped up for his scheduled fight with Eimantas Stanionis on July 8th, 2023. He was hospitalized during the fight week after collapsing. His return fight against Fredrick Lawson takes place this Saturday at a contracted weight of 156 pounds. Ortiz will enter new territory since it is his first bout at this weight, unlike Lawson, who has fought above 147. Ortiz was simply happy to be back in the ring. 

“Right before I passed out before my last fight, I broke down crying, because I thought my career was over. It was a really tough time. I tried to distract myself. I went to some concerts. I’m not over it. I still have two more days, 48 hours. Until I fight again, step in that ring, and win in dominating fashion, then I’ll go over it.

“We were ready. I feel great. I’m comfortable here [at 154]. I have a lot of energy, and I’m ready to go. I feel the same. Nothing has really changed, and that’s a good thing. It feels familiar to when I was at my best. I’m at my best right now,” Ortiz said 

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