This is gonna be a war, top matchup this one 👊🏻
Josh Taylor’s junior welterweight world title unification showdown against Jose Ramirez will take place on May 22 in Las Vegas, Mike Coppinger can reveal.
The highly-anticipated fight will see a unified champion crowned, with Scotland’s Taylor holding the WBA and IBF titles and America’s Ramirez holding the WBC and WBO straps.
The unification bout, which has been in the works since 2020, was made possible when WBO mandatory contender Jack Catterall stepped aside last year. It will be shown on ESPN in the United States.
How did we get here?
Ramirez, 28, won the WBC junior welterweight title by outpointing Amir Imam by unanimous decision back in March 2018.
He defended the belt twice with victories over Antonio Orozco and Jose Zepeda and then added the WBO title to his collection by stopping Maurice Hooker in a classic in July 2019.
Ramirez last fought in August 2020, edging out the dangerous Viktor Postol to defend his dual titles.
Taylor, 30, meanwhile claimed his first world title with a points victory against the Belarusian Ivan Baranchyk in a IBF super-lightweight title fight in Glasgow.
He followed that up by outpointing the American Regis Prograis in a Fight of the Year contender in October 2019, to win the World Boxing Super Series as well as the WBA title.
The Scot then defended both belts by knocking out Apinun Khongsong at York Hall last September.
Why is this fight so significant?
The clash will crown just the second undisputed champion at junior welterweight in the four-belt era, after Terence Crawford.
It is a worthy matchup to be sure. Taylor is The Athletic’s No.10 pound-for-pound fighter and proved he is one of the best boxers in the world with his victory over Prograis.
The Scottish fighter is a rising star in the UK, with his outsized personality and penchant for brawling on the inside at a high skill level.
Ramirez might be the underdog, but only a slight one.
Like Taylor, he’s undefeated and battle-tested. He’s coming off a razor-thin win over the crafty Postol and also owns a knockout victory over Hooker, both tough opponents.
May 22 promises to be a firefight between two dogged fighters with both entering the ring with two belts a piece.