Eimantas Stanionis Sidelined For Ortiz Bout With Appendicitis
Eimantas Stanionis, the WBA secondary welterweight titlist, had an emergency appendectomy on Friday, which has forced his mandatory defense against Vergil Ortiz Jr. to be postponed, Stanionis manager Shelly Finkel told Fight Freaks Unite on Saturday.
The fight was due to headline a Golden Boy card on March 18 (DAZN) at a location to be determined in Ortiz’s home region of Dallas, but the fight had not yet been formally announced.
Finkel said the hope it to reschedule the bout to take place sometime in April.
“It’s a drag and it’s disappointing for everyone but thankfully it’s not serious,” Finkel said. “Hopefully, we can get a date in April.”
Finkel said when he tried to call Stanionis on Friday he could not reach him, which he said was unusual.
“I couldn’t reach him and then his finance called me an hour or two later and said he was coming out of surgery,” Finkel said. “I was like what?! And she told me what happened.”
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The winner of the fight between the unbeaten boxers with good power and exciting styles will be mandated to next face WBA “super” titleholder Errol Spence Jr., a three-belt titlist, although Spence is likely to first face WBC mandatory challenger and former unified titlist Keith Thurman when he returns in the spring.
Stanionis (14-0, 9 KOs), 28, of Lithuania, and Ortiz (19-0, 19 KOs), 24, of Grand Prairie, Texas, were both limited to just one fight apiece in 2022.
Stanionis won the belt by action-packed split decision over Radzhab Butaev in April. Ortiz dominated and knocked out Michael McKinson in the ninth round in August.
Golden Boy, which promotes Ortiz and has a deal with DAZN, won the purse bid in mid-December for $2.3 million to beat an offer of $2,100,100 made by TGB Promotions.