Top Rank/ESPN Has Jose Ramirez-Richard Commey Saturday
The Caleb Plant-David Benavidez promotion is using up most of the air in the room. There are other fights occurring this weekend, though, it should be noted. Top Rank on ESPN is a triple-header, Saturday at Save Mart Center in Fresno, California. In the feature, ex unified world champion Jose Ramirez (27-1, 17 KOs) battles ex lightweight world champion Richard Commey (30-4-1, 27 KOs) in a 12-round junior welter clash.
In the co-feature, WBA minimumweight world champion Seniesa Estrada (23-0, 9 KOs) meets WBC champion Tina Rupprecht (12-0-1, 3 KOs) in a 10-round unification fight. Also, in the opener for TV, Antonio “El Gigante” Mireles (6-0, 6 KOs) battles Patrick Mailata (6-1, 3 KOs). Read this take on Mireles by Ryan O’Hara.
Ramirez-Commey, Estrada-Rupprecht and Mireles-Mailata will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. Promoted by Top Rank, in association with DiBella Entertainment, tickets starting at $29 are on sale now at www.ticketmaster.com.
At Thursday's press conference, this is what the fighters had to say.
“It's always an honor for me to fight here in Fresno in front of the people who saw me grow up as a fighter. I hope to go out there on Saturday to showcase my talent in front of the people who love me the most.”
“I’ve experienced being at the top with people praising me and me being ranked at No. 1. Then, I became unified world champion when I beat Maurice Hooker. Then, all of a sudden after one loss, people started to walk away from that. But I’m just blessed that I have a beautiful family, a beautiful team, and a wonderful promotional company. That’s all I need. So, I found myself, and I realized who I am. I feel like I’m ready to show that lion that we all saw before I started getting distracted with some of the stuff that comes with being at the top. Now it’s time for me to work.”
“We’re focused on Richard Commey. This is a fight that is going to deliver a lot of excitement on Saturday.”
“I’m always excited to get back in the ring. This is what I do. It’s going to be an interesting fight on Saturday. I really want to become a two-time world champion, so I’m coming strong this Saturday.”
“Like Ramirez said, he’s got the ‘fire’ back in him. So, I think he really wants to get back to the top. Just like me.”
“It’s always good to represent people, especially when those people don’t have a lot of eyes on them. So, to be the focal point and represent them is an amazing feeling.”
“I’m so excited. This is the moment that I’ve dreamed of since I was seven years old. It’s crazy to think about how far I’ve come in this sport and how far this sport has come for women. Who would have thought that a little girl from East L.A. would be unifying titles on ESPN? It’s insane to think about how far I’ve come, and I’m just happy to represent all women in sport on Saturday night.”
“I expect Rupprecht to come in there at 100%. I expect her to go in there to win. She’s coming to win. She’s a good fighter. She’s a tough fighter. But I know that I’m different. I’m special, and I’m going to show that on Saturday.”
“I’ve been wanting to make the fight against Yokasta Valle. But this is the first step in making that fight happen. I have to beat Tina to fight Valle for the undisputed championship.”
“I’m very happy to be here. I’m happy to have my first fight in the U.S. I’m excited, and I’m ready to fight. It’s a big honor to fight for both titles. This is always what I wanted. And on Saturday you will see the best version of Tina.”
“Of course, I have watched her fight. But I’m not the kind of fighter who only focuses only on the opponent’s style. I also focus on myself. You will see on Saturday.”
“I’m very excited. I knew this would happen. I just didn’t know it would happen now. It’s going to be nice to finally fight in front of a packed crowd on ESPN. It’s crazy that it’s been over a year since I turned pro. It shows how fast time goes by. But compared to where I was last year, I just feel like a completely different fighter. I’ve improved so much. But, I’m also more confident in my abilities.”
“I’m excited to be here. It’s my first time fighting in Fresno. I’m excited to be on the undercard of Jose Ramirez. I can’t wait. Each fight, I'm getting better and better. You’re going to see me go crazy. I’m just so ambitious. I’m just working hard. And I’m just really trying to stop these opponents.”
Saturday, March 25
ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN+ (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT)
Jose Ramirez vs. Richard Commey, 12 rounds, WBC Junior Welterweight Title Eliminator
Seniesa Estrada vs. Tina Rupprecht, 10 rounds, WBA/WBC Minimumweight Title Unification & Vacant Ring Magazine Title
Antonio Mireles vs. Patrick Mailata, 6 rounds, Heavyweight
ESPN+ (7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT)
Raymond Muratalla vs. Humberto Galindo, 10 rounds, Lightweight
Charlie Sheehy vs. Angel Rebollar, 6 rounds, Lightweight
Jessie James Guerrero vs. Eduardo Alvarez, 4 rounds, Light Flyweight
Ricardo Ruvalcaba vs. Marco Cardenas, 6 rounds, Junior Welterweight
Subaru Murata vs. Jose Negrete, 4 rounds, Junior Featherweight