It’s every fighter’s dream to not only win a world title, but defend it at home, in front of the fans that knew and supported him since way back when. Recently, Errol Spence Jr. scored a 1st round KO, retaining his 147-pound title in front of nearly 14,000 of his closest friends in Dallas, TX. In just over a week, Regis Prograis will put his interim 140-pound laurels up for grabs in his hometown of New Orleans, Louisiana. Consistent with that theme, Jose Ramirez is bringing a WBC Super Lightweight bout to the people of Fresno, CA., Saturday July 7th, from the Save Mart Arena. Headlining “Top Rank Boxing on ESPN”, the show airs at 8:30PM CST on the worldwide leader in Sports, ESPN.
Born and raised in Avenal, just South of Fresno, Ramirez (22-0, 16 KO’s) began boxing at the age of 8. He worked the fields with his family as a child, entered his first national tournament at the age of 11 or 12 and was a member of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Boxing team (along with Spence). But even with the success, Ramirez never lost sight of his upbringing, his lineage as the son of immigrants or his culture. He’s been very out-spoken on the plight of the Mexican community and immigration reform; a particularly dicey topic given today’s political climate.
From the moment he signed with Top Rank, Ramirez was adamant about hosting annual fight cards in his home area to boost the local economy and bring awareness to social causes that resonate with him. His first event, “The Fight for Water I” focused on the California water crisis and its’ impact on agriculture and the production of large percentages of America’s food supply. As a result, proposals were passed and now the goal is to get a dam constructed, to aid with water conservation in Cali. You don’t run across a prizefighter that invested into his community every day.
In March of this year, Ramirez picked up the vacant WBC 140-pound belt via unanimous decision over number one contender, Amir Imam. Competitive throughout, Ramirez’s endurance, work-rate, constant pressure, chin, body attack and looping rights to the head prevailed. His first defense will be against Danny O’Connor (30-3, 11 KO’s) and the writing appears to be on the wall. A southpaw, O’Connor was once stopped in 41 seconds by a man with 4 KO’s in 25 fights, courtesy counter right hand over a lazy lead left. He’s a brave, prideful man, but Danny O’Connor just isn’t on Jose Ramirez’s level.
Ramirez will be amped to put on for his city and O’Connor is being led to slaughter. Ramirez by stoppage in 3 or less.