On Saturday, Match 18th an intriguing battle will take place in Boxing's 175lb. Light-Heavyweight division, which could both be defined as a "Crossroads Fight," as well as a bout that could have implications for the winner challenging for a world championship down the line. This observer is referring to the encounter between former Super-Middleweight world champion Gilberto Ramirez and longtime veteran and former world title challenger Gabriel Rosado.
The fight between the two, which will take place at the Walter Pyramid on the campus of Long Beach University in Long Beach, CA, which can be seen globally on digital subscription sports streaming network DAZN, has two key storylines going into it. While both Ramirez and Rosado will come into this encounter coming off losses, one might argue that both men are moving in different directions at this stage in their respective careers.
Ramirez is coming off of his first career defeat at the hands of undefeated WBA Light-Heavyweight world champion Dmitry Bivol in November of last year. While Ramirez went the distance with Bivol, he was out boxed over the course of the fight in what proved to be a bad style matchup for him against a fighter in Bivol, who is a master boxer. Nevertheless Ramirez made a good account for himself in defeat and now looks to begin the rebuilding process with the hope of gaining another title shot.
In Gabriel Rosado, Ramirez will face a tough and durable veteran, who always puts up a tough fight. Many may recall Rosado, who began his career as a 154lb. Jr. Middleweight, once challenged for a Middleweight world championship, being stopped in seven rounds by Gennady Golovkin in 2013. Although the goal of winning a world title has remained elusive for Rosado, he has continued on with his career and has endeared himself to Boxing fans for always giving a "Game" performance win or lose. After a recent run where he has only won one of his last five bouts and having moved through the Middleweight and Super-Middleweight divisions, career fight forty-five for Rosado will see him moving up in weight again in what will be his Light-Heavyweight debut.
If one is objective, it is obviously a scenario where Rosado, as has been the case throughout his career, is in the role of an underdog. Stylistically, every metric from style, to hand speed, to punching power would appear to favor Ramirez. The key to the fight however, will be how Gabriel Rosado not only looks as a 175lb. Light-Heavyweight, but how will he respond to being hit by the naturally bigger Ramirez. Although this will be the fourth weight class that Rosado has competed in, he has never been known as a power puncher, despite scoring some head-turning knockouts throughout his career.
The interest in any fighter moving up in weight beyond the obvious questions of how they will look at the heavier weight, as well as the issue of whether they will be able to take the punches of opponents at that weight is, at what point will the fighter reach a ceiling where moving up in weight becomes no longer an option. Obviously, we likely will not know the answer to at least the latter until after this fight, but an argument could be attempted at saying that a fighter in Rosado's position may not only look better, but might perform better at a heavier weight simply because the process of cutting down to what may be considerably lower than their normal walking around weight for competition might be less of a difficult process.
After forty-four professional fights in a seventeen year career, this might be viewed by some as potentially Rosado's last stand in terms of possibly securing an opportunity to fight for a world championship again at this late stage in his career. Despite the odds seemingly being against him, Rosado has beaten the odds before against theoretically superior opposition, the question is whether or not he can do that against a fighter of Ramirez' caliber, who in addition to having a good mix of hand speed and punching power, is also very crafty and elusive, remains to be seen. Whether or not a victory for either Ramirez or Rosado will lead to another world title shot in their next fight is also obviously unknown, but a good performance by either will at minimum put the winner in the discussion to challenge either Dmitry Bivol or undefeated WBC/IBF/WBO world champion Artur Beterbiev down the line.
"And That's The Boxing Truth."
Ramirez vs. Rosado takes place on Saturday, March 18th at the Walter Pyramid on the campus of Long Beach University in Long Beach, CA. The bout as well as it's full undercard can be seen globally on digital subscription sports streaming network DAZN beginning with a portion of preliminary bouts beginning at 6PM ET/3PM PT followed by the main card at 8PM ET/5PM PT. (U.S. Times Only.)
For more information about DAZN including schedules, list of compatible streaming devices, platforms, Smart TVs, availability around the world, local start times in your area, and to subscribe please visit: www.DAZN.com.
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