Updated 07:56 AM EST, Fri, Dec 14, 2018

Tony Thompson to Challenge Luis Ortiz for WBA Heavyweight Title this March [Details]

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American heavyweight boxer Tony "The Tiger" Thompson has booked a world title fight against reigning WBA interim heavyweight champion Luis "The Real King Kong" Ortiz. The match will be the main event of HBO's pay-per-view special "Boxing After Dark" at the D.C. Armory in Washington on March 5.

Thompson, who had incessantly been prodding the Ortiz camp to choose him as the champ's next challenger, said that he is delighted by the opportunity to fight for a world title again, per Boxing Scene. He stressed that the Cuban pugilist has yet to step into the ring against a fighter like him.

"If you look at my competition and his, it's not even close. This isn't the amateurs," Thompson declared. "I'm going to use my experience as a professional to take him places he's never been."

The 44-year old southpaw boasted that he has beaten Cuban Olympic gold medalist Odlanier Solis twice. He also reiterated that Ortiz's victories were against amateurs and that if he were to face Ortiz's previous opponents, he would have also been undefeated.

According to Box Rec, Thompson has participated in 46 fights in his decent 16-year career. He has won 40 times, 27 of which came by way of knockout. He has lost six times with no draws. His only knockout loss was at the hands or in this case, fists, of Ukranian juggernaut Wladimir Klitschko.

Meanwhile, the 36-year old Ortiz, who also happens to be a southpaw, has brought the excitement back to the heavyweight division. Known for his devastating combination of power and lateral quickness, Ortiz has been undefeated in 24 fights, knocking out 21 opponents along the way.

Boxing Junkie reported that HBO initially had problems booking a new challenger for Ortiz as fighters like Alexander Dimitrenko and Andy Ruiz had backed out from the March 5 showdown.

Ortiz retained his WBA interim heavyweight title in dominating fashion against Bryant Jennings in December 2015. It can be remembered that Ortiz floored Jennings in the seventh round with a vicious left uppercut to the jaw, per Bloody Elbow. The emphatic win might have also scared off potential challengers like Bermane Stiverne, Alexander Ustinov and Andrey Fedosov.

Speaking to the press about his upcoming fight, Ortiz said, "This fight is just another stepping stone on my path to becoming the unified heavyweight world champion."

The six foot four 240-pound knockout machine added that he had always wanted to live the American Dream. To be fighting in no less than the nation's capital was a dream come true for him.

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