Jose Ramirez has two important junior welterweight fights on his agenda before he’ll seriously think about moving up to welterweight.
If the unbeaten WBC/WBO 140-pound champion can overcome Viktor Postol and Josh Taylor, though, he’ll set his sights on a 147-pound showdown with Terence Crawford. Ramirez (25-0, 17 KOs) and Crawford (36-0, 27 KOs) both are promoted by Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc., which means their fight would be easier to make than any of Crawford’s potential bouts against welterweights champions affiliated with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions.
Host Dan Rafael asked Ramirez if Crawford would be the welterweight he would target during the new episode of Impact Network’s “Stars And Champions,” which will premiere Friday night at 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT.
“Of course,” Ramirez replied. “Yeah, definitely. You know, if I make my way up to the welterweight division, you’re gonna see a much bigger, stronger Jose Ramirez. You’re not gonna see the same 140-pounder. You’re gonna see me develop. You saw Crawford coming from 130, I believe, all the way to 147. I was never able to make 130. My body frame is too big, so you’re gonna see a much stronger fighter at 147. You know, you might see a better Jose Ramirez at 147.”
The 32-year-old Crawford hasn’t boxed beneath the lightweight limit of 135 pounds since he turned pro in March 2008. The three-division champion isn’t considered a big welterweight, however, and stands two inches shorter than Ramirez.
The 27-year-old Ramirez would have to top Postol (31-2, 12 KOs) and Taylor (16-0, 12 KOs) to remain an appealing opponent for Crawford.
The Avenal, California, native is expected to make a mandated defense of his WBC super lightweight title versus Ukraine’s Postol sometime in July. That bout already has been postponed twice due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
If Ramirez defeats Postol, he wants to battle Taylor in his following fight. The undefeated Scottish southpaw must get past the mandatory challenger for his IBF junior welterweight title, Thailand’s Apinun Khongsong (16-0, 13 KOs), to remain in position to meet Ramirez in what would be a full title unification fight.
The 2012 U.S. Olympian has unfinished business at 140 pounds, but the intriguing thought of boxing Crawford remains in the back of Ramirez’s mind.
“I would definitely be up for fighting Crawford,” Ramirez told BoxingScene.com late last year. “You know, it’s just I would love to give myself some time to build my body properly to the welterweight division. Because I wanna give myself the maximum possibility to win. I don’t go in there to lose, man. I go in there to win. The day I’m in front of Crawford, it’s because, to the people’s eyes, I’ll make sure they think it’s a 50-50 fight. I train like the underdog, man, but I know I’m not a 60-40 fighter in the way that they’re gonna have a walk in the park with me, or an easy fight.
“So, the day that I do come across Crawford, it’s gonna be another tremendous fight, and I’m looking forward to it. I’m growing as a 140-pounder. I’m getting stronger as a fighter. He’s 32 and I’m 27. He’ll be 33 and I’ll be 28. So, our bodies will still be able to compete to that maximum potential. In due time, I’ll be happy to do it.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.