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Mayweather unrepentant after controversial knockout of Ortiz

posted 18 Sep 2011, 03:03 by Mpelembe Admin   [ updated 18 Sep 2011, 03:08 ]

Boxer Floyd Mayweather unrepentant after controversial knockout of Victor Ortiz.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, UNITED STATES. (SEPTEMBER 17, 2011) REUTERS - Floyd Mayweather Jr took the WBC welterweight title from Victor Ortiz with a controversial fourth-round knockout on Saturday (September 17) that prompted an angry response from the crowd and raised questions about his conduct in the ring.

Aggressive puncher Ortiz had knocked down 12 of his previous 13 opponents, and he pinned fellow American Mayweather against the ropes before being penalized by referee Joe Cortez for a head-butt.

After a brief time-out, Ortiz apologized to his opponent in the center of the ring by touching gloves before Mayweather suddenly responded with a left hook and crunching right that dropped Ortiz to the canvas at 2:59.

Boos rang out from the crowd in the MGM Grand Garden Arena but Mayweather, who improved his professional career record to a perfect 42-0 with 26 knockouts, was unrepentant.

"We touched gloves and it's fight time, once we touch gloves it's fight time, it's open season," the 34-year-old said afterwards.

Mayweather, widely regarded as the best defensive fighter of his generation, then showered veteran boxing reporter Larry Merchant with abuse and said he had never been given "a fair shake".

"I don't regret it. He needs to be fired, cause he don't ever give me my just due," Mayweather told reporters when asked if he regretted what he said to Merchant in the ring.

Ortiz, who took the WBC welterweight title from Andre Berto in April with an unanimous points victory, slipped to 29-3-2 with 22 knockouts with the loss and gave his own version of how the bout had ended.

"I was looking at Joe (Cortez- the referee). He said break or something and then boom! And I was like okay I guess it's time for bed," Ortiz said afterward.

Watched by a crowd of around 15,000 that included former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, American pop singer Christina Aguilera and basketball great Magic Johnson, 

Mayweather made a confident start. He landed several body shots early in the opening round and dictated the tempo with a series of accurate right jabs.

Though Ortiz forced Mayweather to back-peddle for much of round two and twice pinned him against the ropes, his opponent responded with a couple of crunching rights to retain control.

Mayweather continued to dominate, maintaining the initiative with accurate punching in round three and then upped the pace in the fourth before getting the knockout he had predicted earlier in the week.

He dominated the official ringside statistics, connecting with 73 of 208 punches thrown to 26 of 148 for Ortiz. Mayweather also landed 61 power punches compared to Ortiz's 26.