Sunday, May 28, 2023  |


For Adan Gonzales, work doesn’t stop because of coronavirus

Adan Gonzales (left) pulled off an upset in beating two-time Olympic gold medalist Robeisy Ramirez. Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank
Fighters Network

DENVER — Many fighters are itching to get back in the ring after the coronavirus pandemic ends, but no one likely has more motivation than Adan Gonzales.

Last August, the featherweight spoiled the professional debut of dual Olympic gold medalist Robeisy Ramirez, flooring him in the first round of their bout en-route to a split-decision victory at Liacouras Center in Philadelphia.

Then Gonzales had to take some time away from the gym to focus on his full-time job and help provide for his wife and two children.

“I’m an independent contractor, bro,” Gonzales told The Ring. “I go to work at 5 a.m. and get off sometimes at 6 p.m. I do it all from delivery to construction, home repairs, junk removal — you name it. I am a handyman.”

After saving up enough money, Gonzales returned to training and was deep in camp when he received the worst news imaginable.

Jeremiah Baca, Gonzales’s 17-year-old cousin, was shot in January during a botched attempted robbery. The suspects then drove Baca to a nearby urgent care and dropped him off at the steps, where he died.

It took nearly two months, but three suspects were apprehended in recent weeks. Denver police arrested Adalberto Chavez, 21; Ricardo Padilla-Gonzalez, 23, and a juvenile male.

“We had just started talking again,” a somber Gonzales said. “He would always follow me around and was a huge boxing fan and a tremendous supporter of my career.

“My condolences go out to his family. It has been a really tough time. I’m going to grind this fight life out until the end in his honor.”

Shortly after that, the 23-year-old Gonzales (5-2-2, 2 knockouts), a nominee for 2019 The Ring Upset of the Year, suffered a left elbow injury sparring.

“I’m injured right now,” he added. “I have to go see a doctor soon, and hopefully I can be back in the ring as soon as possible, but coronavirus has pretty much shut the whole world down, so now we have to wait for that, too.”

Has the coronavirus outbreak impacted his line of work?

“Construction wasn’t affected, and luckily my wife works in the marijuana industry, so we’re good, man,” Gonzales said. “Wash your hands.”