Premier Boxing Champions kicked off the new year with an all-heavyweight pay-per-view card in Florida, and the main event certainly delivered some twists and turns.
Luis Ortiz (32-2-2 NCs, 27 KOs) was dropped twice by former IBF champion Charles Martin (28-3-1, 25 KOs) over the first four rounds. Admittedly they were flash knockdowns but still they were knockdowns of the Cuban. Then things got wild in round six, as Ortiz rocked Martin with a left hand and time stood still for Charles. His whole body pretty much went into freeze mode and yet the fight was not stopped when Martin clearly had no idea where he was. Ortiz poured on the pressure and the punches to score the knockdown.
Martin’s glove got tangled in the ropes, which halted the count and allowed Martin some extra time to recover. You could tell though that his legs were wobbly and he did not have his bearings. Sure enough a second knockdown followed (with some shots to the back of the head definitely connecting), and the ref ended the fight before completing the eight-count. Martin didn’t like it but arguably the fight should’ve been stopped before the first knockdown.
Watch the highlights below:
One of the wildest finishes you'll see... Ortiz badly hurt Martin and dropped him and when he dropped him Martin's glove got tangled in the ropes... Ortiz drops Martin again and the ref stops the fight! pic.twitter.com/81vHUHV0Zm— ✯✯✯✯✯ (@FTB_Vids_YT) January 2, 2022
Ortiz was down on all three scorecards at the time of the stoppage.
The 42-year-old Ortiz remains a relevant heavyweight contender, with his only career losses coming to Deontay Wilder. Martin once again is unable to get a signature win in the division — his win for the vacant IBF title occurred when Vyacheslav Glazkov blew out his knee — but this is as close as he’s gotten.
Not a bad way to start the boxing schedule for 2022.