Vergil Ortiz vs. Maurice Hooker Targeted For March 27 In Dallas

Vergil Ortiz Jr.’s next fight will come in a two-way homecoming.

Multiple sources have informed BoxingScene.com of plans in place for Ortiz to potentially face Maurice Hooker. The crossroads bout–once finalized—is targeted to headline a March 27 DAZN event live from Dallas, where both welterweights are based.

News of the rumored matchup was first reported by Steve Kim of The 3 Knockdown Rule Podcast.

Ortiz (16-0, 16KOs) will fight for the first time since a 7th round knockout of Samuel Vargas last July in front of acrowdless Fantasy Springs Casino inIndio, California. The event marked the first boxing telecast to air onDAZN since the pandemic, though with limited dates thereafter leaving Ortiz without a second fight in 2020 after enjoying a four-fight Prospect of the Year campaign in 2019.

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The run in 2019 included Ortiz’s first true hometown headliner, topping an August 2019 bill in Grand Prairie, Texas. The unbeaten welterweight rose to the occasion, scoring a 6th round stoppage of former title contender AntonioOrozco.

Ortiz has longed for a step up in class as a title shot remains on his short list of goals to accomplish in 2021. A crosstown showdown with a former titlist in Hooker (27-1-3, 18KOs), who went through all of 2020 without a fight as he looks to campaign in the welterweight division.

The 31-year old Dallas native enjoyed a 13-month stay as a junior welterweight titlist, lodging two successful defenses before conceding his crown to Jose Ramirez in their July 2019 unification clash between unbeaten titlists in nearby Arlington, Texas. Hooker has since bounced back with a 1st round knockout win over Uriel Perez in Dec. 2019, marking his first fight with renowned head trainer Brian ‘Bomac’ McIntyre.

Should the date hold up, it would solidify a loaded 1st quarter schedule for DAZN, which includes four shows from Golden Boy Promotions, including its Jan. 2 card which also took place in Dallas.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

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