Jose Pedraza has acclimated well to the junior welterweight division after a rough stretch a few years ago. A win in his next fight could move him into the elite level at 140 pounds.

Pedraza will face Jose Ramirez on February 5 at the Save Mart Center in Fresno, California. The 12-round bout will stream live on ESPN+.

The clash between Ramirez and Pedraza is another chapter in the Mexico-Puerto Rico rivalry. It is also a crossroads bout between two junior welterweight contenders hoping to land a world title shot with a win.

The 32-year-old Pedraza (29-3, 14 knockouts), who resides in Cidra, Puerto Rico, last fought on June 12, stopping hard-hitting Julian Rodriguez after round 8. He has won his last three bouts since losing to contender Jose Zepeda in September 2019. The loss to Zepeda marked his first fight at 140 pounds.

Pedraza is a legit contender who has won world title belts at 130 and 135 pounds. He would lose in world title fights to Gervonta Davis and Vasiliy Lomachenko, respectively. 

Even while some might have written him off after the loss to Zepeda, Pedraza has proved, for now, that he can still find ways to win and that age is just a number. A win over Ramirez would continue momentum towards a possible showdown later in 2022 against undisputed champion Josh Taylor.

Pedraza recently re-signed a promotional deal with Top Rank. Carl Moretti, the Vice President of Boxing Operations at the Las Vegas-based promotional company, praised Pedraza and believes both Ramirez and Pedraza can deliver a sensational fight to fans on February 5. 

“Jose Pedraza has been a constant pro throughout his career,” Moretti told BoxingScene earlier this week. “We are delighted to extend our relationship with him and his team. 

“Pedraza-Ramirez on February 5 promises to be an early 2022 ‘Fight of the Year’ candidate. Hats off to both ‘Jose’s!’”

Ramirez (26-1, 17 KOs), who will again be fighting in his hometown of Fresno, was dropped twice in his unanimous decision loss to Taylor on May 22. Ramirez lost both his WBC and WBO world title belts in the unification clash with Taylor. 

Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene since September 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (California) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing