Forget “Zurdo.” “Pressure” just became the new middle name for the “Mazatlan Mauler,” Gilberto Ramirez. Ramirez (32-0, 24 KOs) will be risking his mandatory challenger position for the WBO title when he goes against once-beaten Gevorg Khatchikian (23-1, 11 KOs), of the Netherlands, Friday night at The Chelsea inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. As if that isn’t enough pressure, Gennady Golovkin will be sitting ringside on an advance scouting mission of Ramirez.
“Tom Loeffler and I have had several serious conversations about pitting these two undefeated warriors against each other next year,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum.
“But it will only happen if Gilberto can win tomorrow night, thus preserving his mandatory challenge for the world title, and then beating WBO world champion Arthur Abraham. That’s a lot of pressure to put on most fighters’ shoulders but Gilberto seems to thrive on it. He has said all along that he only wants to fight the best, even if it means fighting Abraham and Golovkin back-to-back. That’s the same mindset great Mexican champions before him — the real Chavez, Morales, Barrera and Marquez — had and why they were, and are so popular.”
The Ramirez vs. Khatchikian 10-round super middleweight rumble will headline the Friday, November 20 edition of MetroPCS Friday Night Knockout on truTV, which will be televised live on truTV, beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. The telecast will open with unbeaten contender SAÚL “Kid Dynamite” RODRÍGUEZ (18-0-1, 13 KOs), of Riverside, Calif., in a 10-round lightweight battle against IVAN “Bam Bam” NAJERA (16-1, 8 KOs), of San Antonio, TX.