Boxing's future may be uncertain, but unified junior welterweight champion Jose Ramirez is certain of his decision to stay at that weight before eventually moving up to welterweight.
In an interview with Top Rank's Crystina Poncher, Ramirez spoke on why he wants to stick around at 140 pounds before moving up to 147 pounds. Ramirez, who currently holds the WBC and WBO titles, explained that he wants to clean out the rest of the division and become the latest boxer to become the undisputed champion at junior welterweight and that means having to fight Josh Taylor, who is the WBA and IBF champion, someday.
Becoming the undisputed champion at junior welterweight is actually part of Ramirez's plan to go up to welterweight as he believes he will make a bigger splash entering a new weight if he held all the belts in the prior division.
“I owe it to myself to fight for all the belts just because if I were to go up to the next weight class, people will still doubt who the best 140-pounder is, just because there is another guy with two belts (WBA/IBF world champion Josh Taylor}. There are some other fighters that I didn’t get to face at 140. I really want to prove a lot of people wrong. I want to do it for myself. I know I can be the best 140 in the world. I know I can see myself with all four belts. It’s just a matter of time, and once I do that, I think that’s going to put my name more out there worldwide. It’s going to definitely make a stronger impact when I do move to 147 knowing that the undisputed champion at 140 is moving up to 147. I think that’s going to make more noise,” Ramirez said.
If and when Ramirez makes the jump to 147 pounds, a showdown against WBO champion Terence Crawford looms over the horizon. When discussing that potential fight, Ramirez said he'll take any fight that could lead him to another world title.
“I’ll take any route that leads me to fight for a world title. Crawford is an excellent fighter, so yeah, I would definitely be honored to share the ring with him. I think I’ll show him something new. I think I’ll bring something out of him. By the time I do make that decision to move to 147 and put that extra muscle on me, on my body, I’ll be a much stronger Jose Ramirez. I can see myself developing into a better welterweight than super lightweight. I do have the height. I do have the body frame. I think once I put the extra seven pounds on, it’s going to be a huge difference in a very positive way. After Crawford, I plan to stay in the welterweight division for quite a while, definitely fight all the top names out there and see how I do. I think I have what it takes to stay at this level of competition for a long time," Ramirez said.
Ramirez was originally scheduled to defend his titles against mandatory challenger Viktor Postol in February, then in May, but both dates for that fight fell through due to the ongoing situation with COVID-19.
The full interview can be seen in the video at the top of the page.