Stanionis-Ortiz: WBA Orders Dec. 12 Purse Bid Hearing As Negotiations Stall

Yet another pairing between unbeaten welterweights has so far failed to produce a signed and sealed deal.

BoxingScene.com has confirmed that the previously ordered Eimantas Stanionis-Vergil Ortiz WBA ‘Regular’ welterweight title fight will now head to a December 12 purse bid hearing. Once optimistic hopes of reaching a deal quickly hit a wall, as the WBA has since intervened to help move things along.

Stanionis-Ortiz is one of several that will be subject to a purse bid hearing during the WBA’s annual convention next week in Orlando. Such events tend to attract mass participation, particularly among registered promoters who will undoubtedly open up their checkbook knowing a fight of this magnitude is on the table.

The fight was ordered Nov. 18 and given a 30-day free negotiations period for a fight that is officially due to take place by January 16, 2023. Stanionis is represented by promoter Richard Schaefer and his Probellum company, along with manager Shelly Finkel. Ortiz fights for Golden Boy Promotions and is managed by Rick Mirigian.

Both sides pushed for the WBA to enforce their specific status, though for separate fights.

As previously reported by BoxingScene.com, Ortiz petitioned the WBA in September to order a fight with Stanionis as the sanctioning body’s mandatory challenger. Meanwhile, Stanionis pushed for a title consolidation clash with WBA ‘Super’ champ Errol Spence Jr. (28-0, 22KOs), the unbeaten Desoto, Texas native who also holds the WBC and IBF titles. Stanionis spoke up on having the fight ordered once plans collapsed for a discussed undisputed championship between Spence and WBO welterweight titleholder Terence Crawford (38-0, 29KOs).

Stanionis was joined by unbeaten welterweight contender Jaron ‘Boots’ Ennis (29-0, 27KOs), who sought to have his IBF mandatory status enforced for a similar fight.

It appears that neither will land a fight with Spence. Ennis was since approved to next fight for an interim IBF title, albeit in what appears to be a massive mismatch versus Karen Chukhadzhian (21-1, 11 KOs), a Ukrainian welterweight based out of Germany, as part of a January 7 Showtime Pay -Per-View event in Washington DC

Ennis revealed in a recent interview with YSM Sports Media that he was previously due to face Stanionis on Nov. 19, had a deal been reached for the Spence-Crawford undisputed welterweight championship.

Meanwhile, the WBA once again bent the knee when it came time to enforce a meaningful title consolidation bout.

Despite the sternest efforts of Stanionis, the WBA instead approved a request filed by TGB Promotions’ Tom Brown on behalf of Premier Boxing Champions for Spence to bypass Stanionis in favor of a WBC mandatory title defense versus Keith Thurman. That fight was not yet announced, though is targeted for next February.

Stanionis previously agreed to stand down from his owed shot at the WBA welterweight title to instead allow then-claimant Yordenis Ugas to first fight Spence which took place on April 16 at AT&T Stadium, home to the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys in Arlington, Texas and minutes from Spence’s hometown. Spence defeated Ugas via tenth-round stoppage to unify the WBA/WBC/IBF titles atop the Showtime PPV event.

Stanionis was granted a slot on the Showtime lead-in card, winning the secondary WBA welterweight title in a twelve-round decision over Radzhab Butaev.

Ortiz (19-0, 19KOs) advanced to the mandatory position for Stanionis’ version of the title following a ninth-round knockout of England’s Michael McKinson.

Their August 13 clash of unbeaten welterweights took place at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, near Ortiz’s Grand Prairie hometown in the greater Dallas area. Golden Boy and Mirigian successfully lobbied for the fight to be sanctioned as a WBA title eliminator. The request was approved, at the time of the belief that Spence-Crawford would happen and which would leave Stanionis with a mandatory and for the winner to challenge for the undisputed crown.

Instead, the welterweight division now has two fights between unbeaten fighters that it can’t get across the line. The Dec 12 purse bid hearing could either resolve that matter for Stanionis-Ortiz, or the worst-case scenario could arise where the fight somehow doesn’t happen at all.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

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