Deontay Wilder, the reigning WBC heavyweight champion, and challenger Luis Ortiz held a kickoff press conference earlier this week.
Below are highlights from the event:
Undefeated WBC Heavyweight World Champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder and hard-hitting Cuban southpaw Luis “The Real King Kong” Ortiz announced their upcoming Nov. 4 SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING heavyweight world title bout on Wednesday from Dream Hotel in Downtown Manhattan.
The event is presented by Premier Boxing Champions and will air live on SHOWTIME (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) from Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING™.
Because of inclement weather near his home in Miami, Ortiz was unable to travel to New York, but did offer his thoughts about the upcoming fight via telephone.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and TGB Promotions, are on sale now and can be purchased at ticketmaster.com, barclayscenter.com or by calling 800-745-3000. Tickets can also be purchased at the American Express Box Office at Barclays Center. Group discounts are available by calling 844-BKLYN-GP.
Here is what the participants had to say Wednesday:
“I am the best. I am the toughest heavyweight in the division. I am the man in the division. I don’t care what anybody else has going on. You’ve got to come through me.
“When I knock him out, I want my due respect. I’m the only American heavyweight champion of the world and I am the man. Nobody is stronger physically, mentally and spiritually. They are all scared of me.
“I’m the heavyweight in the division with real knockout power. I put grown men down easily. On November 4, Ortiz is going down. After that, you already know who is next. I’m ready to unify.
“If he’s the boogeyman, I can’t wait to shine a light on him because the boogeyman is only effective at night. And we’re in New York so you already know what happened to King Kong in New York.
“The game plan is the same as usual. We’re going to use my attributes. I’m going to set him up until the time comes. Ortiz has a great set of skills and I like his aggressive style. That’s one of the reasons I chose him. I wanted to beat him to prove that I am the man.
“It definitely won’t go the distance. Right now, I’m thinking about three rounds but come November 4th, it might be in the first round.”
“I’m ready to go and excited for the fight. I want to get to November 4 so I can do what I have to do.
“Wilder does a lot of talking. He’s nervous and keeps forgetting the date of the fight. I think he took this fight because he has no choice and no one else to fight.
“I think Wilder is going to run in this fight. He should be careful what he says before the fight, because I think he’s going to run from me.
“Wilder should sign his death sentence. I’m very different than anybody else that he’s fought. I punch harder than anybody else. I’m going to teach him not to mess with Cubans.
“Some skeptics are talking about my age, but look at Mayweather. I still have my speed and my quickness.”
JAY DEAS, Wilder’s Co-Manager and Trainer
“Everything in camp has been going well. Last time we were here in New York we had a great crowd and it was a wonderful event. This will be an even bigger challenge. This is the fight the fans wanted and this is the fight we wanted.
“Deontay has always wanted the biggest challenges. We won the belt in [Bermane] Stiverne’s hometown and we were ready to go to Russia to defend the belt. These are two guys in the division no one wants to fight, but they’ve decided to fight each other.
“This is a great opportunity for Deontay to show who he is and where he is. It’s going to be well worth everyone’s time to be there at Barclays Center.”
LOU DIBELLA, President of DiBella Entertainment
“There is nothing like a great heavyweight championship fight and on November 4th, a great champion is going to fight a great contender. This is a terrific fight.
“This fight is happening because Deontay Wilder wants the world to know that he is afraid of no one, and that he’s prepared to fight anyone and he’s the best heavyweight in the world today. I could not be prouder of him for making this fight happen.
“This is the toughest fight that Deontay Wilder could engage in right now. This is the most difficult opponent he possibly could fight.
“Luis Ortiz is the boogeyman of this division. You haven’t heard anyone scream about fighting Luis Ortiz. A lot of people were shocked when they heard that Deontay Wilder wants to fight him. He not only wants to fight him, but he insisted upon it.
“This isn’t a 43-year-old champion on his last legs in Luis Ortiz. This is a hungry beast that wants to beat Deontay Wilder. But Deontay is a champion. He’s not doing this for the money. A lot of people would think this is a dumb economic move. This is a legacy move. This is a move to prove who is the best. We’re not afraid of Anthony Joshua. If he was available on November 4th and wanted to fight, we’d fight him then.”
STEPHEN ESPINOZA, Executive VP & GM, SHOWTIME Sports
“This has been a really strong year for SHOWTIME Boxing. This will be our 23rd live boxing event on SHOWTIME this year. And they’ve been important, meaningful fights. Not just a big name against a nobody. In fact, 16 times this year on SHOWTIME we’ve featured and unbeaten fighter taking on another unbeaten fighter. We know on SHOWTIME that you’re seeing the best fighting the best. No other network is as dedicated to delivering the highest quality fights. So without question, it’s been a great year. But we may have saved the best for last here.
“We have two of the top heavyweights in the world. Both undefeated with a combined record of 65-0, 60 knockouts. This is the best fight that can be made in the heavyweight division. There is no question about that. This will be the eighth heavyweight title fight we’ve featured in the last two years. The only way to get to one unified champion in the heavyweight division is to have the best fight the best, and that is what is happening here on Nov. 4, and we can’t wait.”