Vergil Ortiz Jr will no longer be working with trainer Robert Garcia, that was the word making the rounds on Friday toward the night-time.
You might recall the Texas native worked with Joel Diaz, in Cali, before bouncing to Garcia, another California fixture, when he was 9-0, in 2018.
ESPN’s Sultan of Sourcery, Mike Coppinger spread the news, that Ortiz would be linking up with Eddy Reynoso, Canelo’s tutor. Then the fighting pride of Grand Prairie, Texas Vergil took to Twitter to say nope, not true.
It didn’t end there—-Robert Garcia posted a video and said no, Copp was right, Vergil gave notice a couple weeks ago. Ortiz Sr and Jr came to Robert Garcia Boxing Academy, Garcia said, after co host Robert Garcia Jr introed the development. The trainer thought it would be a discussion about camp, but no, Senior said they were going in another direction. “We talked, there was no (animosity), they were very professional, the kid stood there and heard everything his dad said.”
The ex fighter turned trainer, whose stable includes Jose Ramirez and ace prospect Bam Rodriguez, thought that Senior would be training his boy solo. That would make sense, pop brought him to a gym at age 5.
“Vergil’s probably the hardest working kid in any gym he goes to,” the coach offered, saying this is part of the sport, it is what it is.
Coppinger, Garcia continued, told the trainer that he heard Vergil would be latching on with Reynoso, who also works (worked?) with Ryan Garcia and Andy Ruiz.
The segment has a bit of a strange vibe to it, several times the Garcias debated aloud whether they should name the reporter who called.
So, a reason cited for the departure, we learned, is because Team Ortiz didn’t like that on August 14th Robert cornered Joshua Franco in his third collision with Andrew Moloney instead of Vergil in his tussle with Egidijus Kavaliauskas. “I don’t regret anything at all,” Garcia the elder said when asked about that precipitant. He decided that Franco probably needed him on fight night more than Vergil did in facing “Mean Machine.” He mulled it, and heard from a majority of people who counseled him to corner Vergil against Mean Machine, because that would be the politically and financially beneficial play.
The Ortiz men seemed to accept the decision and logic when Garcia informed them, he stated. But during the break up meeting, Big Ortiz told Garcia that “Little Vergil” decided the choosing of Franco over him was a deal breaker. The 18-0 (18 KOs) fighter, age 23, accepted his dad’s reasoning, Garcia continued.
He sees the move as being a bit “weird,” because it worked out, Vergil and Franco both had their hand raised. But, ultimately, “there’s no hard feelings … I wanna wish “Little Vergil good luck in his career,” said Garcia, calling him a ‘bad little dude’ who soon will be the toast of 147s.
I reached out to Robert late Friday and asked if there were any updates during Friday night. “I talked to Vergil Sr, we're still good,” Garcia told me. “I don’t blame him. He had his reason, we're still friends. Plus, his son will be training with the best. Can't be mad at him.”
POST-SCRIPT: Coppinger, Vergil Jr and Dan Rafael sparred a bit over the matter. Vergil took aim at a since deleted Mikey Sources Tweet:
And so did Rafael:
And Vergil applauded:
Hey, it is the fight game, sometimes that applies outside the ring, too.