Josh Taylor vs. Jose Ramirez on May 15 or 22nd in Las Vegas
By Jim Maltzman: Bob Arum will be moving the 140-pound unification match between champions Josh Taylor (17-0, 13 KOs) and Jose Ramirez (26-0, 17 KOs) to either May 15 or 22 to avoid clashing with the May 8th fight between Canelo Alvarez and Billy Joe Saunders
Dan Rafael said at Fight Freaks United that Top Rank promoter Arum has already spoken to ESPN about his plans to move the Ramirez vs. Taylor unification fight off the May 8th date to May 15th or 22nd, and he’s been given the green light.
Arum says the Ramirez – Taylor fight WON’T take place behind closed doors at ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. He still wants the fight in Las Vegas, but he’s hoping it can occur in front of a limited size crowd.
Arum has spoken to the governor of Las Vegas about staging the fight between WBC/WBO light welterweight champion Ramirez and IBF/WBA champ Taylor in front of a May crowd.
It remains to be seen whether fans will safely be allowed back by that point, and that will likely depend on the progress made on getting vaccinations up to speed in Nevada.
WBA/WBC super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez (54-1-2, 36 KOs) wants the May 8th date for his unification against WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs).
The date falls on the Cinco de Mayo holiday, and Canelo always fights during that weekend. For Ramirez and Taylor to move Canelo off the date, they would need to be more prominent stars.
“It’s going to be in May but the one thing we’ve agreed to is it won’t be May 8 when Canelo (Alvarez) fights,” Arum said to Dan Rafael at his Fight Freak’s site about the Taylor vs. Ramirez fight.
“Eddie [Hearn] and DAZN came to us and said Canelo’s heart was on May 8. We asked ESPN and they didn’t care [about changing the date for the Ramirez vs. Taylor clash].”
It will obviously be a big disappointment for Arum and his Top Rank company if he cannot get fans for the Ramirez vs. Taylor match in May.
That fight for the undisputed 140-lb championship, and it’s a match-up that many boxing fans have been looking forward to. If Arum is forced to put the Taylor-Ramirez fight behind closed doors, it would be a letdown for fans and the two fighters.
It’s understandable why Arum isn’t talking about moving the Taylor vs. Ramirez fight to Texas or Florida for the May date, as it might not draw in those locations.
Ramirez is from Southern California, and Taylor is from the UK. Moving their fight far away to Florida or Texas could result in a small number of fans.
“Definitely, definitely,” Arum said, whether the Ramirez – Taylor match will take place in front of fans or not on the My 15th or 22nd date.
“F*** this s*** with doing it in the bubble [at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas]. These are the last two (cards) in the bubble.”
Arum has two cards left scheduled for ‘The Bubble’ this weekend on February 13th and then on February 20th.
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