There is something special about making the claim “I was watching that guy fight years ago…” that encourages hardcore fight fans to take in a Thursday night fight card on national television.
Only two years ago, fans of sweet science were streaming Gennady Golovkin fights online from Eastern Europe to get a glimpse of the star who continues to grow into the next big thing, and on Thursday, June 4 from The Belasco Theatre in Los Angeles, Oscar De La Hoya and Golden Boy Promotions take the next step towards showcasing young, promising fighters as “LA Fight Club” hits the City of Angels for another exciting show.
In the main event of the evening, the drama is increased as two featherweights take to the ring in a battle of Mexico versus Puerto Rico; a tradition that goes back decades and almost always includes non-stop action. With a nearly unblemished record, Jayson Velez (22-0-1, 16 KO’s) of Puerto Rico looks to rebound from a draw in November 2014 as he takes on Mexican slugger Daniel “Huracan” Rameriz (11-1, 5 KO’s) of Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico in a 10-round featherweight bout.
Velez, who took Robert Garcia product Evengy Gradovich to a draw for the IBF world title in 2014, is back in the ring for the first time in 2015 and looks to get back in the win column before making another run at a title.
“You know at that moment I thought I could win the fight, but it was tough. He is a champion and we both gave it our all. I think I won the last round so I thought I may win,” said Velez.
After the unfortunate draw against Gradovich, the young Puerto Rican star took some time off to let his body recoup and set a plan for the future. Speaking like a veteran of the sport, Velez speaks highly of his camp, coaches and family, which have led him down the path of success for many years.
“I was fine with taking some time off. I took a short vacation with my family after the fight, but I am training well now and I am ready for this fight on June 4…I am ready to get a win back on my record,” said Velez. He adds, “no injuries thankfully. Just needed some time to rest.”
With a goal to fight twice more in 2015 and have one of those fights be for a title, Velez, who is ranked #4 in the WBC and IBF, and #9 in the WBA and WBO, is the perfect position to make a run at any of the current titleholders with a dominant performance over Ramirez on June 4.
“Yes of course, I always have a title on my mind. That is what I want. And I think I will be ready for another shot this year,” he confidently tells me.
Velez speaks with a humble confidence during our interview and shows admiration for not only his opponent, in Daniel Ramirez, but also in the tradition of the Mexican vs. Puerto Rican battle inside the ropes.
“He is a tough Mexican fighter and I have to be prepared for that. I have to be smart and use my jab, go to the body and apply pressure,” Velez says. He adds, “Also stay out of the corners and avoid body shots.”
“I have love for the Mexican fans and I love the tradition. We are all tough fighters and we work hard…and we show it in the ring,” he says.
On Thursday night at The Belasco Theatre, under the bright lights of Los Angeles, Jayson Velez looks to add another win to his impressive record and earn bragging rights for his home country.
LA FIGHT CLUB: Velez vs. Ramirez is a 10-round featherweight bout presented by Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Corona Extra and Mexico – Live It To Believe It! Doors open at 5:00 p.m., and the first bout begins at 5:30 p.m. The FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes broadcast will air live at 10:00 p.m. ET / 7:00 p.m. PT.