LAS VEGAS -- Vergil Ortiz has officially put the welterweight division on notice. The unbeaten power puncher wasted little time in disposing of former interim super lightweight champion Mauricio Herrera, as he pounded away for a third-round knockout in a scheduled 10-round bout Saturday night in the chief support bout to Canelo Alvarez vs. Daniel Jacobs middleweight world unification fight at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
At this point in his career, the 21-year-old Ortiz (13-0, 13 KO's) looks ready for a world title shot. While he has seen better days, the 38-year-old Herrera (32-9, 7 KO's) was the most seasoned opponent Ortiz has faced as a professional. But it did not matter, as Ortiz became the first man to finish Herrera inside the distance
Ortiz, of Dallas, who moved up from 140-pounds, badly hurt Herrera with a vicious right hand late in the second round, and followed up his onslaught with another right hand that floored his opponent. Herrera was saved by the bell, but was still clearly shaken up.
In the third round, Ortiz rocked Herrera with a right hand to the head, and referee Russell Mora stopped the fight and attempted to break Herrera's fall as he crashed to the canvas.