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Ramirez Responds To Canelo: ‘I Don’t Get It; People Want To See Two Mexicans in The Ring

The last time Gilberto Ramirez checked, all-Mexican fights were among the most time-honored, fan-friendly subgenres in boxing.

So, the former super middleweight champion and current light heavyweight contender was confused (to say the least) when his countryman, the box office titan Canelo Alvarez, recently indicated, in no uncertain terms, that he was not interested in fighting Ramirez because he and Ramirez share the same ethnic origins. Alvarez hails from the Jalisco region in Mexico, while Ramirez comes from nearby Sinaloa.

Alvarez’s thinking seems to be rooted in patriotic notions of solidarity, that fighting a fellow Mexican would amount to something like a conflict of interest. He also seemed to suggest that he does not want to stand in the way of Ramirez achieving his own success in the sport. On Nov. 5 in Abu Dhabi, Ramirez will challenge WBA Russian light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol, who handed Alvarez a comprehensive defeat last May. Alvarez was asked, point blank, if he would consider fighting Ramirez if Ramirez defeats Bivol and the boxing cash cow simply said, “I don’t want to fight with Mexicans.”

In a recent interview, Ramirez was befuddled by Alvarez’s line of thinking. After all, some of the greatest fights and rivalries in the sport have been between two fighters from Mexico, including, as Ramirez pointed out, the legendary trilogy between Marco Antonio Barrera and Erik Morales. (To that, one can add the tetralogy between Israel Vasquez and Rafael Marquez).

“It’s tough,” Ramirez told The DAZN Boxing Show. “People want to see two Mexicans in the ring. I don’t care who’s a rival. For me I want to fight and chase the biggest fights, like this one, [against] Bivol. I don’t know what he  (Alvarez) wants. He say he represents Mexico, but I think as a fighter we have to fight anyone.

“No, I don’t understand (Alvarez’s comments),” Ramirez continued. “I don’t get it. People want to see two Mexicans in the ring, right? Barrera-Morales, people want to see those type of fights. For me, I don’t care. I want to fight all the best, I want to fight anyone.”

In a different interview, with iFLTV, Ramirez seemed to suggest that perhaps members of Alvarez’s team behind his latest soundbite.

“His team is his thought,” Ramirez said. “I don’t know what he’s thinking. People want to see the fight too.” 

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