Jesus Ramos

Jesus Ramos flexes after a workout Wednesday night in Casa Grande. He was on a plane the next day to Biloxi, Mississippi, where he will fight Ramal Amanov on Saturday.

BILOXI, Miss. — Jesus Ramos is about to fight someone double his age, but he isn’t taking his opponent lightly.

Ramos, 18, will fight Ramal Amanov, 35, in a welterweight bout Saturday at the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi. The fight will be televised live on FS1.

Amanov, born in Azerbaijan, was not Ramos’ original opponent. The Casa Grande boxer was initially scheduled to fight Bernard Figueroa (10-3, 4 KOs) of Puerto Rico. Due to a rash of earthquakes on the island that began in late December, Figueroa pulled out of the fight.

Ramos, speaking to PinalCentral from Biloxi on Thursday, said Amanov was announced as his new opponent about three weeks ago.

“He’s got a lot of experience. He’s going to be tough,” Ramos said. “He’s a southpaw. Luckily I don’t have a problem with southpaws. When I fight southpaws, it just clicks.”

As a southpaw himself, Ramos said he understands left-handed fighters because he knows their moves and how to counter what they want to do in the ring.

Amanov (16-1, 5 KOs) has just 17 pro fights, a small number for a 35-year-old, but Ramos said he has a deep boxing background with numerous amateur fights over the years. While Ramos said Amanov has a big edge in experience on him, he added amateur fights are no substitute for pro fights.

Ramos (11-0, 10 KOs) is supremely confident and said he was raring to go just two days before the bout.

Starting his pro career when he was just 17 with eight fights in Mexico, Ramos has also fought in Arizona and California. This will be his first fight outside of those three areas.

“It’s so far away. Half of my family can’t even come,” he said, adding they will all be watching on TV. “I’m here for business.”

Coming off a spectacular third-round knockout of Rickey Edwards (12-4, 3 KOs) last September, Ramos gained quite a few followers on social media. He said he’s even recognized more often when he’s walking the streets.

Ramos enjoys the attention and appreciates people talking to him when he’s in public. The attention is manageable at this point; he doesn’t have swarms of people asking for autographs.

The Edwards fight certainly put him on the map in the boxing world.

In the third round, Ramos smashed Edwards with an overhand left to the temple, and Edwards crumpled to the canvas. It was lights out for Edwards.

The announcers on the FS1 telecast said it was a strong candidate for Knockout of the Year. A video clip of the knockout on YouTube has more than 440,000 views.

“It felt good to get (Edwards) out of there and give the crowd what they want,” Ramos said.

Ramos is a fighter who aims to please. He wants to give the crowd exciting fights.

Against Amanov, the plan is to wear him down over the course of the fight. But if an opportunity for an early knockout presents itself, Ramos will take it.

Taking fights on short notice does present a challenge, Ramos said. However, he wasn’t worried in the least about having three weeks to prepare for Amanov.

“I’m mentally strong,” he said. “I’m a fighter. I’ll fight anybody.”

Ramos will fight near the end of the prelims or the beginning of the main card. Coverage of the prelims begins at 4:30 p.m. Arizona time on FS1, and fights on the main card are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.


Brian Wright is the sports editor at PinalCentral. He can be reached at