Keep an eye out for Jamaine “The Technician” Ortiz tonight in Las Vegas, folks! He’s got a front-row seat to the Shakur Stevenson vs. Edwin de los Santos showdown at the T-Mobile Arena. With the WBC Lightweight title up for grabs, you can bet Ortiz is sizing up his next target.
At 27, Ortiz is no wallflower. He’s cheering for de los Santos, his compatriot, to pull off a shocker against one of the boxing world’s elite. But let’s be real, Ortiz is itching to test his mettle against Stevenson.
“I’m in de los Santos’ corner, but hey, if Shakur takes the win, count me in for a January or February clash,” Ortiz (17-1-1, 8 KOs) declared, revealing his uncle’s role in Team de los Santos.
A tussle with Stevenson was almost in the cards a few months back when Frank Martin bailed on a fight with Shakur. Ortiz was this close to grabbing that world title opportunity.
“We nearly had Shakur in our sights,” Ortiz recalled. “His team was hunting down the WBC rankings, and nobody was biting. I was ready to jump in, but de los Santos beat me to it.”
After de los Santos snagged the spot, Ortiz hit the reset button. But don’t think he’s just sitting around. “I’m done waiting,” Ortiz stated firmly. “I’m calling these guys out. No more sitting on the sidelines for me.”
Ortiz’s last bout? A unanimous decision win over Antonio Moran in September. The fight was at a catchweight of 138 pounds, sparking rumors that Ortiz might be leaving the lightweight division.
While Ortiz admits he’s eyeing a move to 140, he’s still open to big-ticket fights at 135, especially against big names like Shakur or Tank Davis.
“My last fight at 138 was a feeler for the higher weight,” Ortiz explained. “But if a chance to face Shakur or Tank at 135 pops up, I’m there. If not, 140 is my next stop, and Teofimo Lopez, watch out.”
Beyond Stevenson and Davis in the lightweight arena, and Lopez in the junior welterweight class, Ortiz is also gunning for the winner of the December 9th WBC junior welterweight title clash between Regis Prograis and Devin Haney.
“I’m all in for a fight with Prograis or Haney,” Ortiz said. “But let’s face it, Haney’s been dodging me. Every time I hit up the Top Rank gym in Vegas, his crew shuts it down. Haney’s just not into it.”
So, while Haney plays hard to get, Ortiz has his eyes on a buffet of options. Tonight, he’s with Team de los Santos, rooting for his Dominican brother.
“I think de los Santos has a solid shot at surprising Shakur,” Ortiz mused. “But if he doesn’t, I’m right here, ready to step up to Stevenson.”