Marquez vs. Ramos Preview

By Robert Ecksel on July 15, 2011
Marquez vs. Ramos Preview
Watching Juan Manuel Marquez work his magic in the ring is never less than thrilling

Marquez isn’t a Philly fighter. He’s a Mexican fighter, a Mexican warrior, and he embodies the kill-or-be-killed ethos…

This Saturday, July 16, WBA/WBO lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez (52-5-1, 38 KOs) fights a tune-up against number three-ranked southpaw Likar Ramos (24-3, 18 KOs) at the Plaza de Toros in Cancun, Mexico, in anticipation of his historic rubber match against Manny Pacquiao on Nov. 12.

The fighters met the media yesterday at Temptation Hotel in Cancun, and Marquez was clearly happy to be fighting at home.

“What else I can ask for?” he said. “To be in a place where all people have received me very well is an honor and a pleasure to fight here, where many people are knowledgeable about boxing. We will bring a great fight, with every intention to win and celebrate with all the people win.”

Marquez, aka Dinamita, last fought on Nov. 12, when he stopped Michael Katsidis with a ninth round TKO. JMM has been inactive since then, caught in a promotional web from which he needed to extricate himself, and he now needs to work off some of the last eight months’ ring rust.

“I need this fight to prepare for Pacquiao,” said Marquez. “That is the only reason I am doing this.” 

Whenever a fighter agrees to a tune-up, there’s always the risk that something unexpected might happen that could scuttle the big money bout on the horizon. A loss, a bad cut, or even a serious headbutt could deep-six the match. But Marquez is fearless, and Ramos, while a good fighter, is not a great fighter, and he shouldn’t pose much of a problem for the champ.

Marquez’s fight against Pacquiao is likely to be his last hurrah. He’s now 37 years old, and he’ll be fighting above his natural weight. Even in the Age of Hopkins, no one would ever mistake Marquez for a young fighter. He doesn’t fight like Hopkins, any more than Hopkins fights like him. Marquez isn’t a Philly fighter. He’s a Mexican fighter, a Mexican warrior, and he embodies the kill-or-be-killed ethos. One never sees any Hopkins-like defensive moves when Marquez climbs through the ropes. It’s always full steam ahead with Marquez, man the battle stations, don’t shoot until you see the whites of their eyes, I’m the toughest hombre in this ring, and once the opening bell sounds I will prove it.

Marquez, in part because of his age and in part because of how he fights, is on his last legs as a pro. Anyone who watched his defeat at the hands of Floyd Mayweather Jr. in Sept. 2009 could see that JMM is slowing down. He’ll get by Ramos, that’s what tune-ups are for, but he’ll have his hands full when he meets Pacquiao.

Marquez remains a premier fighter, one of the top lightweights in the game. Watching him work his magic in the ring is never less than thrilling. It’s easy to criticize Marquez by saying he’s too tough for his own good, but being too tough is like being too rich, too thin, or too smart. There’s no such thing.

(Marquez vs. Ramos will be streamed live from Plaza de Toros in Cancún, México, via www.toprank.tv, beginning at 9 pm ET / 6 pm PT.)

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  1. The Thresher 02:53pm, 07/15/2011

    Mismatch though Ramos has some pop.

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