Boxing: Gilberto Ramirez
April, 10, 2014
By Bernardo Pilatti | ESPNDeportes.com
Al Bello/Getty ImagesGiovanni Lorenzo, left, faces Mexican prospect Gilberto Ramirez on ESPN's "Friday Night Fights."Mexican prospect Gilberto Ramirez puts his unbeaten record on the line Friday against veteran Giovanni Lorenzo in the main event of ESPN's "Friday Night Fights."
The 10-round super middleweight bout (ESPN2, 9 p.m. ET) headlines a card from the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, on the evening before Manny Pacquiao's rematch with Timothy Bradley Jr.
Ramirez (27-0, 21 KOs), the 6-foot tall knockout artist, has stopped 77 percent of his opponents. The 22-year-old will look for another decisive win Friday against the battle-tested Lorenzo (33-6, 25 KOs), 33, of the Dominican Republic, with an eye on furthering a path in the division.
Friday marks the third time Ramirez will fight outside of Mexico and will be his first bout at super middleweight, having competed at 160 pounds since his debut in 2009.
"I was having a hard time reaching 160 pounds," Ramirez told ESPN.com. "At this weight, I now feel stronger and more confident."
In his last bout, Ramirez needed just 90 seconds to dispose of Don Mouton on Feb. 1 in Laredo, Tex. Ramirez can adapt to any style of opponent, but he mostly favors an aggressive approach centered around pressuring his opponents. Despite his size and wingspan, the Mexican fighter is more comfortable fighting at close range.
Lorenzo, a three-time title contender at 160 and 168 pounds, is two fights removed from a third-round TKO defeat at the hands of Daniel Jacobs last August. Lorenzo has good technique and is effective using his jab.
Ramirez, the southpaw, is the favorite and the bigger puncher of the two. A victory could lift him to an eventual title shot. He is expected to be added to the May 17 Juan Manuel Marquez-Mike Alvarado undercard in Los Angeles.
The co-main event features promising undefeated super middleweight prospect Jesse Hart (12-0, 10 KOs ) against Texan Samuel Clarkson (10-6-2, 6 KOs) in an eight-round bout.