Maurice Hooker vs Jose Ramirez Preview and Prediction

On Saturday 27th July we get the opportunity to watch that all too rare occurrence, a genuine world title unification fight between two high quality unbeaten champions willing to risk their 0’s. WBO Super-lightweight belt holder Maurice ‘Mighty Mo’ Hooker puts his title up against WBC champion Jose Carlos Ramirez in a genuine 50/50 fight.

In fairness, we have seen more unification bouts than is the norm recently because of the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS). For example, Oleksandr Usyk was crowned undisputed world cruiserweight champion (WBA, WBO, WBC, and IBF) after winning WBSS Cruiserweights I in 2018.

It does not always make commercial sense for fighters to participate in unification bouts, often, they can make more money in 2 or 3 hometown defences against safe opposition with the cooperation of the world governing body who collects a handsome sanctioning fee on each occasion.

Thankfully, Hooker and Ramirez are cut from a different cloth, fighters that genuinely want to be hailed as the best in their division. Hooker is promoted by Matchroom Boxing USA and Ramirez by Top Rank, so the money on the table should be pretty substantial. The fight will be shown on DAZN in the USA and by Sky Sports in the UK.

Ramirez is a 2012 London Olympian, going out in the second round to Fazliddin Gaibnazarov of Uzbekistan. Fazliddin went on to become the gold medallist in Rio 2016 and is currently an unbeaten pro with Top Rank.

Ramirez turned pro in 2012, making his debut at Madison Square Garden, just over five years later and after 21 straight victories Ramirez won the vacant title with a unanimous decision over Amir Imam (21-1-0). He has defended the title twice, winning by unanimous decision against Antonio Orozco (27-0-0) and by a tight majority decision over Jose Zepada (30-1-0). As you can see, Top Rank haven’t felt the need to protect Ramirez, pitching him in with tough, hungry opposition.

29-year-old Hooker, a native of Dallas, Texas has 3 draws on his otherwise unblemished record. He won the vacant WBO title against long-time Lightweight champion Terry Flanagan in Flanagan’s hometown of Manchester, England, winning a split decision. American judge Jerry Jakubco scored the fight 117-11 for Flanagan while Deon DeWarte (South Africa) and Phil Edwards (England) saw it 117-11 and 115-113 for Hooker. Beating Flanagan in Manchester is an impressive accomplishment.

Hooker has made 2 defences of the title, the first a 7th round stoppage of Alex Saucedo (28-0-0) and a unanimous decision win against Mikkel LesPierre (21-0-1).

Hooker is tall for the weight and has an exceptionally long reach. He likes to box on the outside but has good power that has accounted for 17 opponents in his 26 wins. The fight is taking place at the College Park Center, in Arlington, Texas, so, essentially Hooker has hometown advantage.

Ramirez is shorter, even though he is 5’ 10” which is not short for the 140lb division, but he likes to get in close and brawl more than box, he has a tremendous left hook to the body and with 16 of his 24 wins coming inside the distance, he is dangerous when he is allowed to get on top. He likes to take the center of the ring when he is not in close and you can see his amateur background clearly at this point as he can jab looking for openings and is quick with his feet.

This is a tough fight to pick, but my instinct says that Hooker will dominate for long periods on the outside, but Ramirez will be smart enough to get inside those long arms and quick enough to land those long left hooks to the body. We should be in for a long fight as neither has shown a weak chin thus far, so I am going for Ramirez on points.


Betting for this bout by Betfair | Terms & Conditions

Jose Carlos Ramirez
Maurice Hooker
Draw



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Regis Prograis wins WBSS Semi-final in Lafayette

Arturo Gatti vs Micky Ward I :: A Never To Be Forgotten Classic

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