Jose Ramirez has come from a place that nobody wants to stay in, or go back to if they don’t have to. He’s worked the fields, picking fruits and veggies under a nasty sun for ten hours at a time. Compared to that, is it any wonder he looked pretty damned fresh and ready to go to 15 if he could against Amir Imam on Saturday night at the MSG Theater, and on ESPN?
Ramirez did the better work, offensively and defensively, in an A grade rumble on a Top Rank production. The bout came in a bit under radar, being over shadowed by the Oscar Valdez-Scott Quigg tango last weekend. But it popped off screens on this night.
Imam outlanded Ramirez in just two of twelve rounds, and the judges concurred, by varying degrees.
Max DeLuca saw a tight one, 115-113 for Ramirez, while John Stewart adored the work of the Cali boxer, 120-108. In the middle was John McKaie, at 117-111 for Ramirez. I think Imam winning two rounds with one even made sense to me, but that doesn’t indicate how solid the fight was…
Said the winner after: “There was a point in the fight that I said to myself ‘Jose what are you doing?’ That’s why I caught my second win and I gave it my all in the championship rounds.”
Ramirez started out strong and kept up a similar pace. He’d make Imam miss and make him pay. When Imam evaded he’d not make Ramirez pay as often.
Imam’s trainer Stacey McKinley, on his way out of the ring, conceded the judges got it right.
The left hook to the body is a favorite of Ramirez, but Imam was pretty mobile and knew not to get caught on the ropes. But by the later rounds, Imam’s right eye was swollen and Ramirez showed zero signs of fatiguing.
“This is a dream come true for me. It is an honor to be a world champion. I’m thankful for the talent God gave me. I dedicate this fight to all the immigrants. I fight for them,” said Ramirez after. “I thought we would box him a little more, but the fight unfolded very well,” said his trainer, Freddie Roach. “Two judges need to be investigated and one judge was being honest. He won every single round. A hometown fight for Jose next would great, but New York was great to us tonight. By the end of the fight, everyone was on our side.”
Regis Prograis sat ringside and admitted he was impressed by Ramirez’ work. They are ordered to face each other and Prograis said he’s pumped to get that made and enter the fray. It will be an anticipated face-off…