Publish Date: 05/18/2021
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
For 2021, most of the boxing world has focused on the upcoming heavyweight unification bout between Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua. Many casuals are also looking forward to a potential third match between middleweights Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez and a possible rematch between Teófimo López and Vasyl Lomachenko. However, purists of the sweet science know that this weekend’s approaching light-welterweight contest between American José Ramírez and Scotland’s Josh Taylor is equally as exciting.
On May 22nd, at the Virgin Hotels in Las Vegas, in what is sure to be a monumental clash between a no-nonsense brawler and a technician, the division will get its unified WBC, WBO, IBF, WBA, and Ring champion. Billed as Undisputed, the bout will crown the first undisputed light-welterweight champion in four years. The last one was Terence Crawford, who relinquished the light-welterweight belt in 2017 to move up to welterweight and take that crown in June of 2018 from Australian Jeff Horn. At the time of writing, most premium gambling sites such as asiabet8888.com have Taylor as the slight favorite.
Background on the Fight
Jose Ramírez is the unified WBC and WBO champion and the pride of California’s Central Valley. The 28-year-old is a son of Mexican immigrants, and he will step into the ring with a record of 26-0, with seventeen victories coming via KO. The orthodox boxer became the WBO champion with a TKO win of Maurice Hooker in July of 2019. He won the vacant WBC light welterweight title via a unanimous decision of Amir Imam a year prior. Ramírez is going into the Saturday night fight coming off a narrow victory over 36-year-old Ukrainian Viktor Postol, who also lost to Josh Taylor in 2018.
Josh Taylor was a junior taekwondo champion and standout amateur boxer who won the gold medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. He transitioned into becoming a professional a year after that achievement. Since then, he has been on a 17-0 run, with 13 of those victories coming via knockout. Taylor won the WBC Silver light-welterweight title with a TKO win over fellow brit Ohara Davies in Glasgow in 2017. He is entering the Ramírez bout coming off a super-impressive first-round knockout of Thai fighter Apinun Khongsong which occurred last September. Before that fight, Taylor managed to squeak out a tight win over New Orleans’ Regis Prograis.
For this fight to happen, mandatory WBO challenger Jack Catterall agreed to a step-aside deal with the Ramírez camp.
Both fighters bring specific tools to the table. If Ramírez gives Taylor too much space to work, he could lose a wide decision. His path to victory is clear, press, and get on the inside. There is no doubt that Jose is the less refined fighter of the two, but he still packs a punch and has tenacity.
What may also play a crucial role is that this contest is taking place on US soil. Thus, Ramírez will undoubtedly have a home-town advantage when it comes to judging. That said, most experts believe that Taylor has sufficient tools to dance his way to victory, picking Ramírez apart en route to a unanimous decision.