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Vergil Ortiz Jr. Vs. Eimantas Stanionis Rescheduled For April 29th

By Adam Baskin: WBA ‘regular’ welterweight champion Eimantas Stanionis will defend his secondary belt against challenger Vergil Ortiz Jr in their rescheduled date of April 29th in Texas.

The two had been scheduled previously to meet on March 18th, but the 29-year-old Stanionis (14-0, 9 KOs) needed an emergency procedure for an appendectomy in his home country of Lithuania in early January, resulting in the fight with Vergil needing to be pushed back to April.

It’s hoped Stanionis won’t need additional time to return from the operation because that could push the fight back even further to May or June. When the match does eventually happen, the winner will either face WBA welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr or be elevated to the full championship stadium if he refuses to fight them or opts to vacate.

The 24-year-old Ortiz will face the biggest test of his seven-year professional career by facing the hard-hitting Stanionis for his secondary WBA belt.

To be sure, Ortiz has taken criticism from boxing fans who believe he could have fought Spence or WBO champion Terence Crawford for their titles but instead is going for the arguably softer target of Stanionis.

Additionally, Ortiz could have fought Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis but went for the fight with Stanionis. It’s fair to say that the young Ortiz Jr is being maneuvered as skillfully as a chess piece on a chessboard by his promoters at Golden Boy, who have kept him out of harm’s way and are putting him in with a guy that he has a better than average chance of beating in Stanionis.

If they threw Ortiz in with Spence, Crawford, or ‘Boots’ Ennis, it’s very likely that he would meet defeat for the first time and would no longer have a perfect record going for him.

“Vergil Ortiz Jr. and Eimantas Stanionis will meet in a rescheduled welterweight bout on April 29 in Texas,” said Mike Coppinger to ESPN.

“The 147-pound matchup was set for March 18 but postponed after Stanionis underwent an emergency appendectomy in his native Lithuania earlier this month.”

Ortiz’s recent wins:

Michael McKinson
Maurice Hooker
Egidijus Kavaliauskas

Ortiz was supposed to face the little-known British fighter McKinson last year in March but suffered an illness called rhabdomyolysis, which some believe was the result of the strain on his body trying to get his weight down to 147.

If Ortiz fails to beat Stanionis, he’ll have to sit & wait for Spence & Crawford to vacate their belts and go after the strap that doesn’t involve him having to fight ‘Boots’ Ennis because that’s a bad match–up for him.


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