Hearn Says Luiz Ortiz Turned Down A $7 Million Offer To Fight Joshua

05/02/2019 - By James Slater - Comments

Promoter Eddie Hearn vowed to “tell all” on that whole Luis Ortiz situation of last week, when attempts were made on his part to make a Joshua-Ortiz fight (Joshua’s first pick upon hearing how Jarrell Miler was out) – and the Matchroom boss was as good as his word. And what Hearn had to say sure makes Luis Ortiz look bad; or at least it makes Ortiz’ team look bad – and greedy, and just plain dumb. Hearn, in speaking with IFL TV, said he received a call from Jay Jimenez, Ortiz’ manager, as soon as the news broke of Miller being out of the A.J fight of June 1.

Hearn said he first offered Jimenez $6 million for Ortiz to step in and challenge Joshua; and then he extended a second offer, this one of $7 million and, get this: a bigger-paying rematch should Ortiz win and a big-money fight under Hearn should Ortiz lose on June 1. Sounds like a great, great offer, right? Certainly one that should have been snapped up by a 40 year old contender who claims, as do many fans, that he is avoided for being so utterly dangerous. Yet Team-Ortiz apparently said no thanks, for reasons known only to them.

“Jay Jimenez phoned me up and said, ‘I can’t believe this [the news about Miller]. I don’t think Luis will be ready,” Hearn said. “I said, ‘Find out if Luis will be ready.’ He came back and said, ‘Make us an offer.’ I made them an offer, $6 million – that was my first offer. There was no reply. On Monday I said’ ‘I’ll call you.’ I said, ‘Right, this is it, $7million for June 1.st [If he wins, he gets] a rematch for quite a bit more, and if he loses, I’ll give you another fight for a lot of money for security.’ I got nothing back.”

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Why would Ortiz turn it down, unless, as Hearn suggested strongly, it is because he didn’t think he could beat A.J? Jimenez did say to Hearn upon receiving the first offer how he wasn’t sure if his fighter would be ready, but six weeks, for a world class fighter, should be enough when the WBA/IBF/WBO world titles are on the line, surely. Hearn was/is justifiably annoyed when he hears people, fans and other people, say Joshua is the fighter who is afraid of certain fights. This is not the case when it comes to Luis Ortiz, as Hearn’s more than generous offer or offers proves emphatically.

So what next for Ortiz now that he has said no to what just might prove to be THE single best offer of his entire career (a career that may not have too long left to run)? As Hearn said, if Ortiz believes he has a rematch with WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder in the offing, he had better hope he gets $7 million for the fight. But does this seem likely? No way.

Just what was Ortiz thinking last week?!