Jose Ramirez vs. Amir Imam – Results
By Jim Dower: Undefeated 2012 Olympian Jose Ramirez (22-0, 16 KOs) stayed unbeaten with an impressive mostly one-sided 12 round unanimous decision victory over the tough Amir Imam (21-2, 18 KOs) to snatch the vacant World Boxing Council light welterweight title on Saturday night in this Top Ran and Don King promoted card in front of a large crowd at Madison Square Garden in New York.
The fight was televised on ESPN. The judge’s scores were all over the place with the scores 120-108, 117-111 and 115-113. The 120-108 score was a really poor one reminiscent of the judge that scored the Saul Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin fight 118-110. Imam did enough to deserve a closer score than 120-108.
I’m not sure what was going through the mind of the judge that turned in that score, but he missed a lot of good things that Imam did in the fight. Boxing News 24 scored the fight 116-112. The judge that scored the fight 115-113 for Ramirez might have given Imam a little bit too much credit, but there were a number of close rounds that could have gone Imam’s way.
Imam, 27, fought well enough to deserve 4 rounds in the fight. It wasn’t a flashy performance by Ramirez. He just outworked Imam, and took advantage of his bad habit of keeping his guard down low instead of up around his head.
Ramirez’s pressure and heavy left hooks wore down Imam in the second half of the fight. It looked for a while there that Ramirez was going to knockout Imam, but he wasn’t able to land enough big shots in a row to finish the job. Adrian Granados had scored an 8th round knockout of Imam three years ago in 2015, but he was a lot better at putting his punches together than Ramirez. Granados is more of a 2-handed puncher compared to Ramirez. If Iman had a little more punching power and mobility, he would have done the job on Ramirez, but he was lacking in those departments. The pressure that Ramirez constantly was putting on Imam ultimately wore him down and got him the win.
With the win, the 26-year-old Ramirez is now the WBC 140lb champion. Getting the WBC title is just the first part for Ramirez. Now he has to defend the belt against the likes of Regis Prograis, Viktor Postol and Josh Taylor. If Ramirez is lucky, the WBC will allow him to get in a couple of voluntary defenses before they push to have him take on Prograis. Ramirez is a good fighter, but he might not be able to hold onto it against Prograis, who looks very hard to beat right now.
Ramirez will be fine as long as his promoters at Top Rank match him well, but if they put him in with Prograis, I expect him to lose that fight right away. Ramirez is too one-dimensional and slow of hand for him to do well against a skilled fighter with punching power like Prograis. It’s too bad Ramirez is being circled by sharks by holding the WBC belt. If Ramirez had went after the WBO title, he’d have an easier time because he’d only have to worry about Terry Flanagan and Maurice Hooker.