Thursday, February 02, 2023  |



Jose Ramirez, Andy Ruiz score first-round knockouts

Photo by Mikey Williams - Top Rank

Photo by Mikey Williams – Top Rank

Earlier in the week, David Rodela said the opponents who have faced Jose Ramirez were already intimidated, giving the 2012 U.S. Olympian an edge.

Few things fazed Rodela during his career but the prospect’s punching power might have convinced the former gatekeeper that Ramirez has a bright future in the sport.

Ramirez knocked out Rodela in the first round before a boisterous crowd of 7,501 at Selland Arena in Fresno, California on Saturday. The bout headlined a “Fight for Water 3” card, presented by Top Rank.

Rodela presented the stiffest test on paper for Ramirez. While Rodela has faced a number of world champions, contenders, and blue-chip prospects, the Oxnard fighter had thoughts of hanging up his gloves in recent months.

It looked as though Rodela came to fight from the opening bell. Though he gave up size to the younger Ramirez, Rodela stayed in the pocket while trading hooks with Ramirez.

That tactic did not last long as Ramirez backed Rodela up against the ropes, unleashing wide but accurate hooks to the head and body. A left hook to the head dropped Rodela to his knees. Rodela remained on his knees, hunched over with his forehead touching the canvas as referee Marcos Rosales counted him out at 50 seconds.

Ramirez, who resides in the nearby farming town of Avenal, improved to 12-0, 9 knockouts, while Rodela dropped to 17-10-3, 7 KOs.


Ruiz stops Lemos

Heavyweight prospect Andy Ruiz stopped Kenny Lemos in the first round.

Ruiz has dominated modest opposition in his last three fights. He has also been known for his weight issues, which takes away from the talent he displays in the ring.

Ruiz weighed in at 272¾ pounds for his bout against Lemos, almost 23 pounds more than when he weighed in for his last fight against Manuel Quezada on May 17.

About a minute into the first round, Ruiz dropped Lemos to one knee with a right hand to the head. Lemos got up and fought back, but his punches did not have the same effect as those as Ruiz. About a minute later, Ruiz backed Lemos into a corner, unleashing a heavy barrage of punches. While Lemos was not visibly hurt, referee Dan Stell saw enough and waved the fight over at 2:18.

Ruiz, who improves to 23-0, with 17 KOs, has stopped his last nine opponents in a row. Lemos falls to 12-9-2, 8 KOs.


Finney-Santiago fight to a draw

In a six-round junior middleweight bout, Michael Finney and Wilkins Santiago fought to a six round split-decision draw.

Finney (12-1-1, 10 KOs) suffered his first loss of his pro career in his last fight to Jaime Herrera on March 29, while Santiago (11-0-2, 1 KO) built his record on fighting less-than-modest opposition.

Both fighters looked to counter, which resulted in few exchanges between the two fighters. When they did throw, each landed right hands to the head.

The lack of action in the fight brought about a cascade of boos from the crowd. The response from the crowd did little to inspire Finney and Santiago, as both were content to wait and counter each other until the final bell.

One judge scored the bout 59-55 for Finney, another judge scored the bout 58-56 for Santiago, while the third judge scored the bout 57-57.


Gallardo stops Ambrosio

In the fight of the night, featherweight Marcello Gallardo (4-1-2, 1 KO) knocked out Luis Ambrosio in the third round.

Both went at each other from the opening bell, landing brutal hooks and right to the head. Ambrosio (4-1-1, 3 KOs) almost dropped Gallardo with a right to the head midway through the first, but it was all Gallardo the rest of the way.

Gallardo stunned Ambrosio on numerous occasions throughout the bout, but it was a left hook about a minute into the third round that hurt Ambrosio. Moments later, a hard right hand dropped Ambrosio to the canvas next to the ropes. Ambrosio was able to beat the count, but was in no condition to continue, prompting referee Dan Stell to stop the bout at 1:32.



Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Salazar also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper,, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing