March 30--Professional boxer Jose Ramirez of Avenal wanted to fight last month in Los Angeles. An injury ended that plan.
During a sparring session, Ramirez hit the other fighter with an uppercut to the chin that opened up the middle finger on his right hand, exposing ligaments.
With his knuckle swollen, Ramirez was forced to back away from a matchup with Charlie DuBray a week before the scheduled Feb. 23 bout in Culver City.
All healed up, Ramirez is again ready to go and will get his chance at DuBray today.
The pair will square off in a four-round lightweight bout that is part of the HBO-televised Brandon Rios/Mike Alvarado II card at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.
"I'm feeling good," Ramirez said Thursday. "Usually the hardest is two days before the fight making weight. I feel a lot better and I'm just looking forward to putting on a good show."
Ramirez made a good impression in his first pro fight, recording a technical knockout over Corey Siegwarth, 2 minutes and 5 seconds into the first round in December.
Now, he is setting his sights on MMA fighter-turned boxer DuBray.
"I know a little about him," Ramirez said. "He's a southpaw and a little shorter than I am. He throws open shots; kind of from the outside and is wild. Throws power punches."
Like Ramirez, DuBray won his professional debut in October by knockout.
Ramirez, 20, would like to fight again next month.
"Most definitely," he said. "I want to stay busy after this. I'm always in good shape. Hopefully everything goes well. Usually take Monday and Tuesday off and back on Wednesday and get ready for the next fight. Just stay busy, because you can't really get more experience unless you fight more."
A win this weekend should keep the 2012 Olympian -- with Nike and other high-end sponsors already in tow -- on an upward career trajectory.
Said agent/promoter Rick Mirigian, "Jose is living his destiny, now we just have to sit back and let time unfold and watch his greatness one fight at a time."
The reporter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (559) 441-6042.
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