Former Wilder foe and heavyweight southpaw Luis “The Real King Kong” Ortiz (30-1, 26 KOs) returned to STAPLES Center for a second consecutive victory with a resounding 10th-round TKO against Travis “My Time” Kauffman (32-3, 23 KOs) of Reading, Pa.
The 39-year-old Ortiz of Camaguey, Cuba, registered left-cross knockdowns in the sixth, eighth and 10th rounds before the final blow coming later in the 10th round against a gritty Kauffman. It was the 26th career stoppage for Ortiz, who lost to Wilder in a Fight of the Year candidate back in March.
The fight was officially called at 1:58 of the 10th round. “I’m a warrior,” Ortiz said. “Nothing contains me. We didn’t have to knock him out but we wanted to show everything we have in our repertoire, and we showed it tonight.”
Ortiz, who was warned twice for low blows, clipped Kauffman for a second time by a lethal left hand of Ortiz at 2:29 in the eighth round. But just like the first time he was send to canvas in the sixth round, Kauffman was able to get up and continue fighting.
The technically sound performance by Ortiz included 376 jab attempts to Kauffman’s 99 and out-landing him 66-7. That led to a 135-37 lead in total connects and a 69-30 margin in power connects against Kauffman, who SHOWTIME commentator Paulie Malignaggi called, “a stubborn guy who wouldn’t go away.”
“Of course I’ll fight the winner of this fight [Wilder-Fury],” Ortiz said. “I want that second fight with Wilder. I want to fight anybody.”
In the pay-per-view telecast opener, Joe “The Juggernaut” Joyce (7-0, 7 KOs) recorded a massive first-round knockout against Joe “The Future” Hanks (23-3, 15 KOs). A rising heavyweight, Joyce, from London, England, ended the fight officially after just 2:25 as he used a right jab to set up a near-perfect left hook sending Hanks to the canvas and down for the count.
Trained by noted trainer Abel Sanchez, Joyce told Gray he’s ready for anyone. “I want to get in some bigger fights,” said the former Olympic silver medal winner who recorded his fourth first-round KO. “I’ve been doing well so there is plenty more to come. All the support from back home in England, thanks for coming. I hope I put on something good to watch.”
It was the second win in the United States for Joyce, who also picked up the vacant WBA Continental heavyweight title. “I’m getting people out quickly,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of experience, I’m just going to improve on my strength and my speed. I’ve heard comments that I’m slow but I seem to land the shots and get the job done.”
Earlier in the night on SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION Adonis Stevenson’s five-and-a-half year reign as the WBC Light Heavyweight Champion of the World ended as Oleksandr Gvozdyk dethroned boxing’s longest reigning champion with a devastating 11th round knockout from Videotron Center in Quebec City.