Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez (44-0, 30 KOs) wants the World Boxing Association to order WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol to defend against him next.
Ramirez has been waiting for Bivol to get around to defending against him, and he’s anxious for the WBA to speed up the process. Unfortunately for Ramirez, Bivol (20-0, 11 KOs) wants to face IBF/WBC/WBO champion Artur Beterbiev or take on Canelo Alvarez in a rematch.
With the tremendous interest from boxing fans in seeing a Canelo vs. Bivol rematch, the WBA would be shooting themselves in the foot by ordering a Bivol-Ramirez fight. If Ramirez were to beat Bivol, that would take a lot of the shine out of a Canelo-Bivol second fight.
“I appreciate the WBA and believe the right process will be followed,” Ramirez said. “I’m confused about Bivol ducking me.
“I earned the WBA mandatory challenger position in the ring, not once, but twice. He’s been talking about fighting me for the last two years. It’s time. Canelo didn’t commit to the rematch, so now I’m curious what other excuses he (Bivol) might make to avoid me,” said Ramirez.
Zurdo Ramirez held the WBO 168-lb title from 2016 to 2019, but he didn’t fight anyone popular enough to become a star. He wanted to fight Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez, but not surprisingly, neither of those fighters was interested in facing him. It’s easy to see why.
Even at 168, Ramirez was huge for the weight class. Zurdo was the size of a light-heavyweight when he fought at 168, and now that he’s in the 175-lb weight class, he’s big for that division as well.
For Ramirez’s last fight against Dominic Boesel, he rehydrated to 203 lbs after weighing in at 174. If there were a rehydration clause to keep Ramirez from ballooning up into the 200s, it would make sense for Bivol to fight him next.
Ramirez is painfully slow, very easy to hit, and nowhere near the fighter, he was when he fought at 168. Adding bulk to his tall 6’2″ frame has slowed Ramirez down, and he doesn’t possess the power of the talented fighters in the division like Beterbiev, Joe Smith Jr., Bivol, or even Anthony Yarde.
Ramirez is an easy mark for Bivol or any of the top light heavyweights without his colossal size.
Promoter Eddie Hearn wants Bivol to defend against Buatsi next, and that’s a fight that can make money if it’s staged in the UK. It wouldn’t be easy for Bivol, considering Buatsi can punch, but the other option of fighting the cruiserweight-sized Zurdo Ramirez is no piece of cake either.