• Home
  • News/Videos
  • Heavyweight Champion Wilder vs Ortiz, Charlo vs Centeno March 3rd
Back To Home

Heavyweight Champion Wilder vs Ortiz, Charlo vs Centeno March 3rd

*BROOKLYN* (Jan. 23, 2018) – Undefeated WBC Heavyweight World
Champion *Deontay
“The Bronze Bomber” Wilder* will face his toughest opponent to date when
he meets hard-hitting Cuban southpaw *Luis “The Real King Kong”
Ortiz*Saturday,
March 3 from *Barclays Center*, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING™ and presented
by Premier Boxing Champions.

The co-feature of the evening will see the return of undefeated former
154-pound world champion *Jermall Charlo*, a powerful knockout artist who
is looking to prove that he is a dangerous contender in the star-studded
middleweight division. Once-beaten contender *Hugo Centeno Jr.* will test
Charlo’s 160-pound credentials when they meet in a 12-round match to
determine the WBC interim champion, with the winner immediately stepping
into the picture for middleweight supremacy.

Tickets for the show, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and TGB
Promotions, start at $50 and are on sale now. To purchase tickets, visit
Ticketmaster.com, BarclaysCenter.com, or call 800-745-3000
<(800)%20745-3000>. Tickets for the event can also be purchased at the
American Express Box Office at Barclays Center.

“We’re very excited to bring the heavyweight champion of the world, Deontay
Wilder, back to Brooklyn for his seventh title defense and third appearance
at Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING™,” said Lou DiBella,
President of DiBella Entertainment. “This fight is happening because
Deontay wanted to silence his critics by taking on the biggest challenge
available. Deontay has an axe to grind with Ortiz and will swing it on March
3. Former 154-lb. champion Jermall Charlo is already a top player at
middleweight and plans to prove he’s carried his power with him by facing
one of the division’s best prospects, Hugo Centeno Jr., who is coming off a
huge knockout victory in his last fight.”

“Deontay Wilder and Luis Ortiz is one of the best fights that can be made
in the heavyweight division and its’ what heavyweights are all about –
power versus power,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions.
“Everybody loves the knockout and that’s what Wilder and Ortiz specialize
in. In the co-main event, Jermall Charlo is strictly seek and destroy in
the ring. That ferocious spirit made him a force at 154 and he has brought
it with him to the 160 pound ranks. Centeno is a rugged competitor and he
doesn’t back down from anyone. That makes this a can’t miss fight for the
boxing fans.”

True heavyweights in every sense of the word, the 6-foot-7, 228-pound
Wilder and the 6-foot-4, 240-pound Ortiz have 62 combined knockout
victories.

The 32-year-old Wilder (39-0, 38 KOs), the only reigning American
heavyweight world champion, is a knockout artist with the power to end any
fight in spectacular fashion. His only professional match that went the
distance was the fight in which he won his world title with a dominant
12-round unanimous decision over Bermane Stiverne on Jan. 17, 2015 -the
birthday of legendary heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali. The champion out
of Tuscaloosa, Alabama added Stiverne to his list of knockout victims in
his last fight with a devastating first round destruction in their rematch
at Barclays Center on Nov. 4.

Wilder was originally supposed to fight Ortiz that night, but Ortiz was
pulled from the match after he tested positive for a banned substance.
Ortiz was later cleared after the WBC determined he had failed to list
medication that he was taking on his pre-testing paperwork, which triggered
the positive test. He was assessed a fine and allowed to resume boxing.

Wilder, a Bronze Medal winner for the U.S. Olympic boxing team at the 2008
Beijing Games, has successfully defended the title six times. This will be
his third title defense at Barclays Center. In his first defense at
Barclays Center, Wilder scored a memorable ninth-round knockout over Artur
Szpilka back in Jan. 2016.

“I’m looking forward to returning to Barclays Center to defend my title for
a seventh time,” Wilder said. “Luis Ortiz is one of the toughest guys
around and he’s supposed to be the boogeyman in the heavyweight division.
But I’ve never been afraid of the boogeyman and I’ve knocked out every
opponent that I’ve faced. I plan on keeping that streak going. Everyone
standing in my way of becoming the undisputed heavyweight champion has to
go down. It’s Luis Ortiz’s turn.”

The 38-year-old Ortiz (28-0, 24 KOs), of Camaguey, Cuba by way of Miami,
Fla., will make his Barclays Center debut when he meets Wilder for his
first title shot. The hard-hitting southpaw turned pro seven years ago
after defecting from Cuba and has since been steadily climbing the
heavyweight ladder. He cemented his standing in the division with victories
over veteran contenders Bryant Jennings, Tony Thompson and Malik Scott and
is the No. 1-ranked contender by the WBC. In his most recent fight, Ortiz
scored a devastating second-round knockout of Daniel Martz in Miami,
Florida on Dec. 15.

If Ortiz wins, he will become the first Cuban born fighter to win a
heavyweight world championship.

“This really is the best versus the best as far as the heavyweight
division, and everyone who knows boxing knows that,” Ortiz said. “There’s
been too much talking already. It’s time to fight. All I ask now is that
the winner of this fight receives the respect from the other man, from the
public, from the media and the fans that they deserve as the best
heavyweight in the U.S.”

Charlo (26-0, 20 KOs) won his super welterweight title with a dominant
knockout of Cornelius Bundrage in 2015 and eventually achieved the
distinction of holding a world title in the same weight class (154 pounds)
as his twin brother after Jermell won a title in 2016. After successfully
defending his 154-pound title three times, Charlo of Richmond, Texas
decided to move up to 160 pounds to win another title in a different weight
class. In his debut at 160-pounds the 27-year-old scored a TKO victory over
Jorge Sebastian Heiland at Barclays Center on July 29.

“I really love fighting in Brooklyn and at Barclays Center,” said Charlo.
“The fans in Brooklyn always show me a lot of love. Since my last fight
I’ve had a chance to work on my patience and work on improvements to my game.
I’ve got the same feeling that I had before I won my first world title. I
want to be a champion at 160 more than I did the first time at 154. More
than anything I just want to get back in the ring. Centeno is a tough
fighter. He’ll be a hard test for someone who isn’t at my level. I’m not
taking anything away from him. But he’s just another fighter that’s in my
way. I don’t feel like I have anything to prove to anyone else in this
fight. I’m all about proving things to myself now. In the 160-pound
division you’re hearing my name more and more. It’s more than you did when
I was at 154 pounds.”

The 26-year-old Centeno (26-1, 14 KOs) caught everyone’s attention when he
scored a stunning knockout of Immanuwel Aleem in his last fight on Aug. 25.
It was enough to springboard Centeno into middleweight title contention.
Centeno of Oxnard, California successfully rebounded from a tough TKO loss
to Maiej Sulecki on June 18, 2016 with a victory over Ronald Montes before
his match against Aleem.

“I’m excited for the opportunity,” said Centeno. “I think my last outing
had a lot to do with this/ It helped to put me in this position. Charlo is
a great fighter with a lot of talent. I feel like we have similar statures.
It’s going to be an interesting fight. I think it’s going to come down to
who is the smarter fighter that night and who has more left in the tank
toward the end. This is a life-changing, career-changing fight for me that
could lead to bigger and better things. I’m coming to win.”