On December 19 heavyweights Bryant Jennings and Luis Ortiz battled in Verona, New York in a fight that was broadcast on HBO Boxing. Here’s how the fight went, followed with fight stats and post fight commentary.
Both fighters came out fast and throwing a lot of punches to start the round. Not many clean punches landed early, but Ortiz caught him with a straight jab midway through the round that hurt Jennings and he looked for a first round knockout. A left hand, right hook combo from Ortiz hurt Jennings with about 40 seconds left in the round and Jennings went into run mode, barely surviving.
10-9 Ortiz after round one.
Jennings came out throwing a lot punches to start the round again, still not looking like his legs were under him yet. Jennings was now landing the cleaner punches midway through the round as he looked to get his legs back under him. Jennings bounced back nicely and landed three times as many punches as Ortiz this round.
10-9 Jennings in round two, 19-19 total score.
Both fighters came out a little hesitant to throw this round, almost as if they were catching their breath for the first minute. The second minute started with a bang for Ortiz as he connected with a strong left hook that hurt Jennings again. The ref warned Ortiz about his pushing midway through this round. Jennings put together a five punch combo, but hardly any of them landed cleanly. The last half of the round ended with not much action other than that. Ortiz did enough to win this round.
10-9 Ortiz in round three, 29-28 Ortiz after three rounds.
Both fighters once again came out throwing a fury of punches, but none of them really landed. Ortiz landed a clean left hand that snapped back Jennings head, but it didn’t seem to bother him. Jennings responded with two uppercuts and the two exchanged punches for the rest of the round, with Jennings landing more than Ortiz.
10-9 Jennings in round four, 38-38 after four rounds.
Both fighters came out with tons of energy to start the round with Ortiz being the more active boxer. He was keeping his space, throwing his punches and getting out of the way. Ortiz landed another powerful uppercut that looked to wobble Jennings, but he managed to keep his legs under him. Ortiz won this round for being more active and creating the space he needed to operate.
10-9 Ortiz in round five, 48-47 Ortiz after five rounds.
Once again both fighters came out throwing lots of punches to start the round with no one really landing any solid hits. Jennings was the one who was keeping his distance this round and picking his punches more strategically rather than standing in the middle and exchanging. Neither boxer really landed anything this round, Ortiz landed a combo in the last five seconds that was enough to possibly steal the round.
10-9 Ortiz in round six, 58-56 Ortiz after six rounds.
Jennings was more willing to stand in the middle and try and trade with Ortiz this round and he looked to put the pressure on Ortiz early in the round. Jennings missed an opportunity to capitalize on a straight right that he landed when he failed to throw anything after landing. With fifty seconds left in the round, Ortiz landed a left uppercut that dropped Jennings for the first time in his career. When Jennings got back to his feet, he was met with a right hook followed by a left hook and the referee stopped the bout.
Ortiz was the winner by TKO.
After the fight, Ortiz was asked who he wanted to fight next and he said the following. “I know it’s a new era, I told you it’s a new era, but I don’t see Deontay Wilder anywhere here. I told you it’s a new era and everyone has to take me in some consideration in the heavyweights. Many said I took steroids and this and that but I’m a clean man. I want Wilder, Fury, HBO and Golden Boy, they decide. But I deserve to be underlined as one of the best.”
Ortiz improved to 24-0 with 21 KOs, while Jennings fell to 19-2 with 10 KOs. This was a solid fight for the heavyweight division and both fighters were very active in the bout. I would like to see Ortiz be a little more aggressive, rather than waiting on opportunities. Aggressiveness could be costly, but it could also prevent him from taking unnecessary hits as well. The referee did a great job in stopping the fight and protecting Jennings so that he could continue his career after this fight. I expect Jennings to bounce back and look forward to his next fight.
Landed: Ortiz-128 Jennings-136
Thrown: Ortiz-441 Jennings-327
Percentage: Ortiz-29% Jennings-42%
Landed: Ortiz-109 Jennings-130
Thrown: Ortiz-268 Jennings-276
Percentage: Ortiz-41% Jennings-47%