Serhii Bohachuck-Vergil Ortiz Jr. not done, not even confirmed, but the fighters want it

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Serhii Bohachuk and Tom Loeffler. Photo by Brandon Rivas / 360 Promotions

by Francisco Salazar | 

A fight between junior middleweight standouts Serhii Bohachuk and Vergil Ortiz Jr. is an anticipated showdown that would produce fireworks.

The good news is that both fighters want the fight. Now it is up to their respective teams to find common ground and reach an agreement.

Tom Loeffler, head of 360 Boxing Promotions and Bohachuk’s promoter, clarified what was stated in an article that appeared on Boxingscene last week that gave false pretense to a fight between Ortiz and Bohachuk being finalized.

“Just to be clear, I did an interview (Thursday) about that fight,” Loeffler told The Ring late Friday night. “I said both fighters agreed to fight each other, but there were no terms agreed to. They had approached us when (it was determined that) Tim Tszyu wasn’t able to compete (on August 3). They, Golden Boy and TGB (Promotions), had reached out and I said Serhii would take the fight. Serhii agreed. From what I understood, the Golden Boy side and Vergil Ortiz’s side agreed to (the) fight. Both fighters, both fight camps, agreed, but there’s no terms agreed to. There’s nothing confirmed to be on that (August 3) show.”

Golden Boy has promoted Ortiz since he made his pro debut in July 2016.

Ortiz was scheduled to fight Tszyu on the Riyadh Season card that is taking place on August 3 at BMO Stadium in Los Angeles. The fight would have preceded the main event bout between Ring Magazine welterweight champion Terence Crawford and newly-crowned WBA world junior middleweight titleholder Israil Madrimov.

Last week, on the advice of his medical team, Tszyu withdrew from the Ortiz fight as the cut he suffered on his hairline in his split decision loss to Sebastian Fundora on March 30 has not fully healed. Tszyu lost the WBO world title in the defeat to Fundora.

Bohachuk (24-1, 23 knockouts), who is rated No. 4 by The Ring at 154 pounds and now lives and trains in Los Angeles, fought on the same March 30 card that took place in Las Vegas, defeating Brian Mendoza by unanimous decision. Bohachuk has won his last six fights since suffering the only defeat of his career at the hands of Brandon Adams in March 2021.

On April 8 of last year, Mendoza knocked out Fundora in one of 2023’s biggest upsets, but would lose by decision to Tszyu six months later.

Ortiz (21-0, 21 KOs), who resides in Grand Prairie, Texas, last fought on April 27, knocking out former world title challenger Thomas Dulorme in the opening round. The 26-year-old Ortiz is managed by Rick Mirigian and trained by Robert Garcia.

Loeffler is holding out hope that Ortiz vs. Bohachuk can be made. He believes with their aggressive, power-punching styles, fans will be the winners.

“I think it’s a tremendous match-up, regardless of what show that fight winds up at,” said Loeffler. “Both guys have all their wins coming by knockout. So, I don’t know how you could get a better match-up than that. Serhii is the interim WBC (junior middleweight) champion and Vergil has the WBA Gold title. It really is a tremendous matchup if there is a way we can make that fight happen.”


Francisco A. Salazar has written for The Ring since October 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected]

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