Undefeated heavyweights Deontay Wilder and Luis Ortiz will fight at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Nov. 4.
The fight will be televised by Showtime as part of the Premier Boxing Champions series. It will be the sixth title defense for the 31-year-old WBC champion Wilder (38-0, 37 knockouts), and he’s already touting a potential matchup with Anthony Joshua after Ortiz.
“When I knock him out, I want my due respect,” Wilder said at a news conference on Wednesday. “I’m the only American heavyweight champion of the world and I am the man. Nobody is stronger physically, mentally and spiritually. They are all scared of me.”
The 38-year-old Ortiz is 27-0 with 23 knockouts. If he wins, the 6-foot-4, 240-pounder would become the first Cuban heavyweight champion.
Wilder has long stated his goal of unifying the heavyweight division. The 6-7, 228-pound Alabama native calls it “one of the best heavyweight fights in a long time.”
Ortiz offered his own prediction for the outcome.
“Wilder should sign his death sentence,” he said. “I’m very different than anybody else that he’s fought. I punch harder than anybody else. I’m going to teach him not to mess with Cubans.”
Joshua holds three heavyweight belts and will fight Bulgarian boxer Kubrat Pulev on Oct. 28. Joseph Parker defends his WBO title Saturday night against Hughie Fury. (The Associated Press)