Jose Ramirez-Jose Pedraza Junior Welterweight Showdown Postponed to Friday, March 4 at Save Mart Center LIVE and Exclusively on ESPN+ – Pedraza tested positive for COVID-19
Heavyweight U.S. Olympic silver medalist Richard Torrez Jr. will make professional debut in a six-round special feature
The homecoming of former unified junior welterweight world champion Jose Ramirez is happening, just 27 days later than expected. Central Valley native Ramirez will fight former two-weight world champion Jose “Sniper” Pedraza in the 12-round main event Friday, March 4 at Save Mart Center in Fresno, California.
Ramirez and Pedraza were scheduled to fight Saturday, Feb. 5, but Pedraza tested positive for COVID-19.
In the six-round heavyweight special feature immediately before the main event, Olympic silver medalist Richard Torrez Jr., from the Central Valley town of Tulare, California, will make his long-awaited professional debut. The 10-round co-feature will see the Top Rank debut of featherweight contender Joet Gonzalez, who will fight Filipino veteran Jeo Santisima. The entire Ramirez-Pedraza card will stream live and exclusively in the United States on ESPN+.
March 4: Gabriel Flores Jr.-Abraham Montoya Junior Lightweight Showdown Added to Ramirez-Pedraza Card at Fresno’s Save Mart Center LIVE on ESPN+
Gabriel Flores Jr. is aiming for a fresh start in Fresno. The 21-year-old junior lightweight hopes to bounce back from his first career defeat in a 10-round bout against Mexican veteran Abraham Montoya on Friday, March 4 at Save Mart Center.
Flores and Montoya will do battle underneath the junior welterweight main event between former unified champion Jose Ramirez and two-weight world champion Jose “Sniper” Pedraza. The entire Ramirez-Pedraza card will stream live and exclusively in the United States on ESPN+.
“The mission I’m on is personal, and I will be a world champion,” Flores said. “I am more motivated than ever, and I will have answers for whatever Montoya brings.”
Flores (20-1, 7 KOs), who hails from Stockton, California, will have a sizable cheering section make the roughly two-hour drive to Fresno. Last September in Tucson, Arizona, he suffered his first career defeat, a one-sided unanimous decision loss to Luis Alberto “El Venado” Lopez. Flores showed his mettle over 10 rounds, fighting back in the face of Lopez’s relentless onslaught. Signed by Top Rank as a 16-year-old, Flores was flawless throughout the first four-plus years of his pro career. In February 2020, he became only the second man to knock out Puerto Rican contender Jayson Velez.
Montoya (20-2-1, 14 KOs), from Mexicali, Mexico, is an eight-year pro with a knack for upsetting undefeated prospects. In March 2018, he bested Luis Alberto Lopez (12-0 at the time) by split decision. Last February, he upset undefeated prospect Alejandro Guerrero by majority decision. He has won two fights since a November 2019 decision defeat to top contender Muhammadkhuja Yaqubov.
Flores Jr. vs. Montoya joins a packed undercard that includes featherweight contender Joet Gonzalez (24-2, 14 KOs) against Jeo Santisima (21-3, 18 KOs) in a 10-rounder, the six-round heavyweight professional debut of U.S. Olympic silver medalist Richard Torrez Jr., rising junior lightweight Karlos Balderas (11-1, 10 KOs) in an eight-rounder, lightweight prospect Charlie Sheehy (1-0, 1 KO) in a four-rounder, 6’9 heavyweight Antonio “El Gigante” Mireles (2-0, 2 KOs) in a four-rounder, and middleweight prospect Javier “Milwaukee Made” Martinez (5-0, 2 KOs) in a six-rounder.
Rising Lightweight Star Charlie Sheehy Signs Promotional Contract with Top Rank
Lightweight prospect Charlie Sheehy (1-0, 1 KO), a 23-year-old former Team USA amateur standout from the Bay Area town of Brisbane, California, has signed a multi-year professional contract with Top Rank.
Sheehy, who is managed by Peter Kahn, won 17 national amateur titles. He will make his Top Rank debut in a four-round bout Friday, March 4 on the Jose Ramirez-Jose Pedraza undercard (live on ESPN+) in Fresno, California.
“We’ve had our eyes on Charlie since his amateur days, and we believe he is a young man with the potential to bring championship boxing back to the Bay Area,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum.
Sheehy said, “I am honored to become part of an organization that has built some of the greatest boxers of all time. This has been a dream of mine since I began boxing. It feels amazing to know that the biggest promotional company in boxing believes in me. I look forward to showing the world my skills and becoming a world champion with Top Rank.”
Sheehy started boxing at eight years old at Fire in the Ring Boxing Club in San Francisco under head trainer Miguel Rios, who is still in his corner. He is preparing for his March 4 bout in South Florida alongside undefeated junior middleweight phenom Xander Zayas.
Sheehy made his professional debut last October in Fresno, where he knocked out Luciano Ramos in the fourth round. As an amateur, he defeated numerous top names, including Ryan Garcia and Vergil Ortiz Jr. He placed third at the 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials, where he dropped a competitive decision to eventual Olympic silver medalist and Top Rank promotional stablemate Keyshawn Davis. Sheehy was the 138-pound Olympic alternate, and with dreams of Olympic gold dashed, he turned his focus to the pro ranks.