Wednesday, March 22, 2023  |


Q&A: Julian Ramirez

Julian Ramierz (L) with Scott Quigg.

Julian Ramierz (L) with Scott Quigg.

It’s closing in on three years since Julian Ramirez turned pro. The 21-year-old junior featherweight has made good use of that time, winning all 12 of his bouts to date with seven inside the distance.

I feel I’ve been developing well,” Ramirez told when asked how he’s found the transition. “I had a pro style in the amateurs, so it hasn’t been that hard for me.”

Ramirez will step into the ring against Pedro Melo (9-6-2, 2 knockouts) on Thursday’s Golden Boy Live! card. It’s all part of the learning process that any young fighter goes through, something “El Camaron” understands.

“I have a good team and my manager (Joel De La Hoya) has a lot of experience, and I think they are moving me at the right pace,” he said.

The California-born fighter comes from a boxing family; his uncle was none other than the late Genaro Hernandez, the former WBA and WBC junior lightweight champion.

However it wasn’t his uncle that first turned Ramirez onto boxing. That happened quite by happenstance.

He didn’t have any influence about boxing,” said Ramirez. “In fact he told me not to be a boxer.

We wouldn’t talk about boxing, we would talk about soccer. I respect what he accomplished, being a world champion, but it’s just a coincidence that my uncle was a world champion and I chose to be a boxer.

“The only thing he told me about boxing besides not doing it was to train until I couldn’t pick my arms up anymore.”

Ramirez-Melo will take place at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, Calif., as the co-main event on Fox Sports 1 alongside Joseph Diaz-Roberto Castaneda. Also scheduled to appear are teammate Diego De La Hoya and Chinese heavyweight Dong Taishan.

Anson Wainwright – What are your thoughts on your fight with Melo?

Julian Ramirez – Don’t know much about him, he probably knows more about me but I’ll be ready for whatever he brings.

AW – Earlier this year you got a good eight rounds under your belt against Derrick Wilson?

JR – Derrick Wilson is a really good fighter, and we both trained really hard for each other. I knew he was coming for me because he’s used to beating all the undefeated prospects so I was ready for him. I really wanted the KO, but I was only able to drop him twice. After the fight we spoke about how hard we trained for each other and we both had a lot of respect for each other. Looking back I think it was good we went the distance to show people that I could go the distance if needed.

AW – You beat Ricardo Hernandez in your most recent fight. Tell us about the fight.

JR – He was a durable guy that was in great shape. I broke him down to the body and he didn’t come out for the last round.

AW – Prior to that fight you were out of action for five months earlier this year – why was that?

JR – I fought in April and hurt my knuckle during the fight. I was sparring getting ready for my next fight and it was still tender so my team decided to make sure it healed properly. It’s 100 percent better now.

AW – You’re born and raised in Los Angeles, could you tell us about your younger days?

JR – Just a regular kid, I was an all around athlete. I played, baseball, soccer, basketball, football and go-kart racing. My home life was average, both my parents have always worked and expect me to work hard and be a good person.

AW – How did you first become interested in boxing?

JR – I was at the gym and I ended sparring my cousin who was already training. I did really good the first round but got winded the following two rounds. I trained for 2 or 3 weeks, and got back in there with him. My great grandfather saw me in the ring and started training me. A couple of months of training and he had me in my first amateur fight, which was the California State PALS (amateur tournament).

AW – You were a pretty good amateur, could you tell us about that part of your career?

JR – My record was 73-5. I fought some of the best guys out there: Gary Antonio Russell, Joel Diaz, Joseph Diaz, Saul Rodriguez and Erik De Leon. I won almost all of the junior national tournaments and I also won the Mexican games.

AW – A year or so ago after meeting several of the fighters from Joe Gallagher’s gym who were at the Wild Card training you seemed to forge a friendship with Scott Quigg and then came over to the U.K. and were one of his main sparring partners.

JR – Scott went to the Wild Card looking for sparring just like I did. He needed a southpaw for his fight against Rendall Monroe and he asked me to work with him for a month in the U.K. I flew out a day after my fight in San Antonio and worked with Scott for a month. I got to see Ricky Hatton’s last fight, I got to hang out with Joe Calzaghe, and became a fan of Scott Quigg. Scott is a really dedicated, disciplined worker, and just a nice guy. I still keep in touch with him and his family. Scott and his mom were there to support me against Derrick Wilson. Coach Joe Gallagher and his fighters are all hard workers, and I can’t wait to go back.

AW – The Wild Card is home to many top fighters, including Manny Pacquiao, Miguel Cotto, Paulie Malignaggi, Brian Viloria etc. How does being around those types of fighters help you?

JR – I don’t train at the Wild Card, but do go there looking for sparring sometimes. It’s always good to be around the elite fighters to see how they train, and to improve by sparring with the best out there.

AW – What is a typical day in the life of Julian Ramirez?

JR – Typical day for me would be my trainer Rafael Sarabia waking me up to go run or meet up with Dominick Paris, my conditioning coach. I will have breakfast after that morning workout, rest before my sparring and boxing session. Snack on fruit or protein shakes. Then I will head back home and have an early dinner, rest before I head out to the local LA Fitness and get a light workout in before the night is over. I do this 6 days a week and rest on Sundays.

AW – Who were your boxing heros growing up?

JR – Finito Lopez and Mike Tyson. I like seeing Finito Lopez’s fights on YouTube. I like how Finito would set up everyone with a jab. I like how Mike Tyson was aggressive and didn’t act all crazy with his opponents.

AW – In closing do you have a message for the junior featherweight division?

JR – I plan to fight at junior featherweight for now and move up in a couple of years. I don’t have a message, I just plan to work hard and keep improving.

Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected]and you can follow him at