Northern (and Central) California fighter of the year: Jose Ramirez
Jose Ramirez can sell a lot of tickets and when you do that astute fight fans will become impatient to see just how good the fighter is or even worse assume the fighter is being protected, because of their profit margin for the promoter. Ramirez, who has been selling out the Save Mart Center in Fresno, CA for years now, had yet to face a professional fighter who seemed his equal, in November of this year that changed, well kind of. Ramirez fought Mike “Yes Indeed” Reed, a fellow Top Rank prospect from Maryland, who he stopped in two rounds with mainly predicated off a left hook to the body that Reed essentially sat on the ropes hoping the flurry would stop.
Ramirez garnered his best professional performance on ESPN first telecast of a professional boxing match from Fresno, CA and quite possibly the last bout ever legendary color commentary Teddy Atlas was able to call for ESPN.
Ramirez now has a ticket to stardom as long as he gets by highly touted Amir Imam, whom he is fighting for the WBC junior welterweight title in New York City, New York on March 17th. This will be Ramirez’s first time as a pro on the east coast as well as one of the first big fights he has away from his hometown of Avenal, CA, which is roughly 30 minutes from Fresno, CA. Ramirez also has worked with power agent Rick Mirigian for the majority of his career which has also added to his success.
In a year in which not a lot of transition occurred for Northern and Central California fighters, Ramirez rose to the challenge he was faced with and put himself in position for national stardom over the next two to three years. With the retirement of Andre Ward, Ramirez is easily the biggest name from Northern and Central California. Ramirez also seems to have Alex Saucedo amongst other top junior welterweights eager to face him at the top of the division making his next few years quite possibly very enjoyable for one of the most fan friendly fighter in the sport.
Honorable Mention: Andre Ward