Vergil Ortiz Jr. (9-0, 9 KOs), the rising knockout artist and pride of Dallas, Texas, will battle former world champion Juan Carlos Salgado (27-8-1, 16 KOs) in a 10-round super lightweight fight in main event of the June 23 edition of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, Calif. Doors for the event open at 3:00 p.m. PT, and the first fight begins at 3:30 p.m. PT. ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes will air the fights beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT. ESPN3 will live stream undercards beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT.
Since debuting as a professional in 2016, Ortiz Jr. has never heard the final bell of a fight, and he hopes to retain his 100% knockout rate this year. This sensational Mexican American, who has his roots in Michoacan, Mexico, will return after capturing the Junior NABF 140-pound title via third-round technical knockout victory against Jesus Alvarez Rodriguez in the co-main event of the Feb. 22 edition of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN. Ortiz Jr. is excited about stepping up in competition so that he can demonstrate that he will be world champion one day.
“This is an amazing opportunity,” said Vergil Ortiz Jr. “I’ll be headlining a Golden Boy event for the first time and against a former world champion. I’ve stopped all my opponents in my career, and I hope to do the same in my toughest fight yet. Make sure to not miss my fight on June 23 at the Belasco Theater!”
Salgado is a rugged former world champion who in his prime defeated a who’s who of some of the best fighters in recent years. After a stellar start to his career, Salgado defeated Jorge “El Niño de Oro” Linares via first-round technical knockout to capture his first world title. Salgado would lose his title to longtime holder Takashi Uchiyama, though he would win his second world title two years later against Martin “El Brochas” Honorio. The 33-year-old puncher has also fought the likes of former world champion Argenis Mendez and world title contender Miguel “Mickey” Roman in his career. Because of his experience, Salgado is confident he will upset the rising young pugilist in Ortiz Jr.
“I know that people think that I’ll yet another stepping stone for Vergil Ortiz Jr.”, said Juan Carlos Salgado. “But I want to tell everyone that they’re wrong. Mexicans do not back down, and it’s very tough for us to give up a loss. I’ve done away with predictions before, and this fight will not be the exception. You will all see a great fight on June 23 in Los Angeles.”
In the co-main event, Hector “Finito” Tanajara Jr. (13-0, 5 KOs) of San Antonio, Texas will clash against previously undefeated Roger Gutierrez (18-1-1, 15 KOs) of Maracaibo, Venezuela in an eight-round lightweight battle. Tanajara Jr. is staying very busy as he returns for the third time this year against a dangerous opponent in Gutierrez, a fighter who has only one loss and is coming off four stoppage wins.
Ferdinand Kerobyan (8-0, 4 KOs), of North Hollywood, Calif., will battle Israel Villela (6-10, 2 KOs) of Cancun, Mexico across a scheduled six rounds of super welterweight action in the night’s swing bout. This Armenian-born prospect looks to follow in footsteps of his successful countrymen Vic Darchinyan, Arthur Abraham, Vanes Martirosyan, Artyom Simonyan and Azat Hovhannisyan. Kerobyan is one of the latest prospects to join exclusive Golden Boy Promotions stable and the first fighter under the management of former UFC fighter and current WWE Superstar Ronda Rousey.
Kevin Ventura (8-0, 7 KOs) of Omaha, Neb. will participate in a six-round super lightweight fight, while Kanat Islam (25-0, 20 KOs) of Oxnard, Calif. will fight in a 10-round super welterweight fight. Opponents for both fighters will be announced shortly.
Ortiz Jr. vs Salgado is a 10-round super lightweight fight presented by Golden Boy Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING” and Hennessy, “Never Stop, Never Settle.” The fights will take place Saturday, June 23, 2018 at Belsaco Theater in Downtown, Los Angeles, Calif. Doors for the event open at 3:00 p.m. PT, and the first fight begins at 3:30 p.m. PT. ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes will air the fights beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT. ESPN3 will live stream undercards beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT.
Tickets for Ortiz Jr. vs Salgado start at $25 and are available for purchase now at www.goldenboytickets.com and the Golden Boy Promotions Facebook page.