Tag Archives: Maurice Hooker

Oscar De La Hoya: “Vergil Ortiz Will Beat Anybody At 147 Right Now”
Posted on 02/07/2021

By: Hans Themistode

Things can change immensely in a short time span. COVID-19 has proven that statement to be true as most of the world is still adjusting to life with the infectious disease. In the case of rising welterweight contender Vergil Ortiz, he’s proving that his professional career is also changing in just the blink of an eye.

After winning ESPN’s boxing prospect of the year in 2019, Ortiz now finds himself on the fast track to a world title as he takes on former belt holder Maurice Hooker on March 20th, in his hometown Dallas area. While Ortiz is solely focused on convincing everyone that he is truly a player at 147-pounds, promoter Oscar De La Hoya doesn’t need to be convinced any longer.

Although he might be just 22-years-old, De La Hoya has sat ringside at nearly every single one of the Dallas native’s fights and has witnessed body after body crumple in agony after getting blasted by his young star. Not only is De La Hoya under the impression that Ortiz will get past Hooker in roughly two months but he ultimately believes that no matter who is placed in front of him, the results will be the same.

“When you think about Vergil Ortiz, he has to be the best fighter out there at 147, or any in weight class for that matter,” said De La Hoya during a recent press conference. “I’ve said this all along, Vergil Ortiz will beat anybody at 147 right now.”

In the case of Hooker, he’ll present a much sterner test for Ortiz than what he has grown accustomed to. Not only has the 31-year-old former titlist faced fighters similar to Ortiz and managed to walk right through them but he’ll also have every physical advantage checked on his side of the boxes, including a ridiculous ten-inch reach over his man.

All of those reasons and more, have led De La Hoya to having a few restless nights as he admits it won’t be a walk in the park.

“I think Hooker has the advantage. He’s going to present to Vergil different movements, footwork, speed and mannerisms. They’re all totally different than what Vergil has been used to fighting. He’s fast, explosive and very elusive – it’s going to be different for Vergil. The question is will he pass that test? Will he knock Hooker out? Vergil Ortiz has been knocking everybody out so we want to see Vergil go several rounds.”

With Hooker holding the upper hand in nearly every category other than youth, many have questioned why on earth would De La Hoya place his young and quite possibly brightest star, in harm’s way with only 16 fights under his belt? For the former multiple division champion, however, he views the number of fights that Ortiz has accrued during his career as just that, merely a number.

Once upon a time, De La Hoya was in the same position as Ortiz. Just like the 2014 Hall of Famer managed to pass several tests placed in front of him at a young age, De La Hoya believes both he and Ortiz are cut from the same cloth. Should his young star leave the ring with another explosive victory on the night, then he’ll be well on his way to superstardom.

“I fought for my first world title when I had 11 fights. I believe Vergil Ortiz is on the verge of becoming a superstar. I think skies the limit if he gets past Hooker.”

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Maurice Hooker vs Vergil Ortiz Jr. Officially Set To Take Place On March 20th In Dallas Texas
Posted on 01/27/2021

By: Hans Themistode

The Dallas Texas area will be split right down the middle come March 20th.

Former 140 pound WBO belt holder Maurice Hooker and current welterweight contender Vergil Ortiz Jr., are officially set to clash from their respective Dallas hometown with a chance to take a big step forward in their careers.

For Hooker, his upcoming showdown against Ortiz Jr. will represent his first in his new weight class. Originally, the former Jr welterweight champion was expected to take on a much lesser foe in order to get his feet wet in his newly joined division. However, with Ortiz Jr. currently holding the distinction as one of boxing’s hottest prospects, the 31-year-old views a matchup with Ortiz Jr. as a no brainer.

“I’ve never been one to shy away from a fight,” said Hooker. “The decision to fight Ortiz was an easy one as it allows me to prove to the world something that I already know, that I’m one of the best welterweights in the world. I have a new team around me who has taken my game to a whole new level, and I feel amazing at this weight class. I can’t wait to put on a show for all the fans on March 20. Dallas, get ready.”

While Hooker might be brimming with confidence, Ortiz Jr. feels the exact same way. Although he has yet to face anyone the caliber of Hooker, the soon to be 23-year-old has sent a statement to the welterweight division each and every time he has stepped foot inside of the ring. With none of his 16 career contests making it past the seventh round, Ortiz Jr. is not only excited to be facing someone that he has known most of his life but also someone that he knows will fight fire with fire.

“First and foremost, I’m really grateful to be fighting back at home again,” said Ortiz Jr. “Not only that, but I’ll be fighting another Dallas native in Maurice Hooker. I’ve known Hooker since back in the amateur days. I know we’re going to give the fans back at home a fight to remember.”

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Maurice Hooker Opens Up on Failed Regis Prograis Fight Negotiations: “He’s a Coward, I Will Slap That Dude”
Posted on 07/04/2020

By: Hans Themistode

The 2020 boxing schedule was turned upside down the moment COVID-19 announced it’s presence. Contests such as Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury 3 and Teofimo Lopez vs Vasiliy Lomachenko were thought to be impossible to make until at least 2021. Thankfully for fans though, promoter Bob Arum assured the public that those contests will in fact take place. 

Wilder vs Fury has a tentative date of mid December, while Lomachenko vs Lopez is currently eyed for September 19th. 

Unlike those newly rescheduled matchups, a contest between former 140 pound champions in Regis Prograis and Maurice Hooker, which was originally set to take place on April 17th, at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland, has gone by the wayside. 

A matchup between the two former belt holders was amongst the most anticipated contests of the pre COVID-19 year. Plans to salvage the bout via a closed door event was recently discussed between both parties. 

However, discussions never materialized into a new fight date as constant back and forth bickering over weight closed negotiations early. 

Prograis immediately pointed the finger at his opponent, claiming that Hooker wasn’t “professional” amongst other choice words. 

Now that their contest is dead in the water, Hooker has opened up about exactly what happened. 

“I decided to move up to 147,” said Hooker on FightHub. “In my last two or three fights I’ve been having trouble making 140. Me making 140 takes a big toll on me on fight night. So I decided to move up to 147. I told Regis and them and he was just like he’s not going up to 147. So he said let’s do it at 144 and I told him that’s still too low. But he just kept trying to call shots like he’s Floyd Mayweather or something.” 

“We both don’t have a belt so we can fight at whatever weight we want to. I told him let’s do 145 and he just kept saying nah 144 so I just left it alone. If you really want to fight me then you’ll just come up to 145. What’s one more pound? He really don’t want to fight.”

For Hooker, the back and forth discussion over weight was pointless. Making the 140 pound limit was taking a “big toll” on the 6 ft former champions body. And while 145 pounds wouldn’t be easy, Hooker was willing to acquiesce for one reason and one reason only.

“I’m willing to die making weight, just so I can get my hands on him,” explained Hooker. “I just want to beat the guy.”

Animosity in the boxing world is often manufactured as a way to sell tickets to the viewing public. But in the case of Hooker and Prograis, the genuine dislike for one another is as real as it gets.

“I will slap the shit out of that dude,” said Hooker. “He’s a coward. When he sees me in person he’s going to shut up, he won’t say shit. I promise he won’t say shit because I will slap that dude. When he sees me he better keep that same energy. And if he do, I’m a slap him.”

With their contest officially in the rear view mirror, fans can only imagine how things would have played out. For Hooker though, he doesn’t have to assume how their matchup was going to unfold. It’s clear as day for the former title holder. 

“I was going to stop him. I was going to hurt him.”

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