LOS ANGELES — Former super middleweight champion Gilberto Ramirez made his Golden Boy Promotions debut in grandiose fashion Friday night, pulverizing Sullivan Barrera to the body to score three knockdowns en route to a fourth-round knockout.
Ramirez scored a knockdown in the third, and two more in the fourth before Barrera’s corner stopped the fight 1 minute and 38 seconds into the fight.
The DAZN main event bout between Ramirez (42-0, 28 KOs) and Barrera (22-4, 14 KOs) was held outdoors at the Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles.
The first two rounds started off at a slow, timid and tentative pace featuring more of a feeling-out process, but that quickly came to an end in the third when Ramirez landed a vicious left hook to the body that got the action going.
The shot forced a delayed knockdown as Barrera processed the blow, turned his back and took a knee.
Ramirez scored an encore knockdown of sorts in the fourth with yet another body shot and delayed knockdown.
The 32-year-old Mexican Ramirez landed two more shots to the head of Barrera to finish his work for the night.
With wins over Joe Smith Jr., Karo Murat, Jeff Lacy and losses against Andre Ward, Dmitry Bivol and Jesse Hart, the 39-year-old Cuban Barrera appeared game for the contest, outlanding Ramirez with 43 total punches (all of them of the power variety) compared to 30 (21 power) by his opponent, per CompuBox.
Ramirez ultimately landed the more meaningful punches.
Ramirez signed with Golden Boy in February following his split from Top Rank. He fought for just the second time in 27 months.
The bout took place on a soccer pitch built for the MLS franchise LAFC. It was the second boxing event ever held in the stadium. The first was in 2019 in a fight headlined by Emanuel Navarrete’s win over Francisco De Vaca.
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com or on www.ManoukAkopyan.com