'Zurdo' way overweight, Rosado fight canceled; card goes on with Diaz-Gesta new main event
Details on CSAC's decision to suspend, fine Ramirez; full card purses
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Light heavyweight contender Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez did not bother to come to the scale for the weigh-in on Friday afternoon because he was so dramatically overweight and his main event against Gabriel Rosado was canceled.
They were due to meet in a 175-pound fight in the main event of the Golden Boy card on DAZN on Saturday (8 p.m. ET) at The Walter Pyramid in Long Beach, California. However, Ramirez was unofficially 182.6 pounds — 7.6 over the contract weight.
That was too much for an agreement to be made with Rosado (26-16-1, 15 KOs), 37, of Philadelphia. He was at his best at junior middleweight and middleweight and was already moving up from super middleweight to face Ramirez to go forward with the bout.
The show will still go on with the 12-round co-feature between former junior lightweight titlist Joseph “JoJo” Diaz Jr. and two-time lightweight title challenger Mercito Gesta moving into the main event for a junior welterweight fight. That bout was announced and promoted as a lightweight bout but they both weighed in as junior welterweights when the official contract was amended to accommodate Diaz. He weighed 139.4 pounds and Gesta was 137.2 pounds.
“Due to Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez failing to make the contracted weight, Zurdo vs. Rosado has been canceled,” Golden Boy said in a statement. “We are very disappointed for letting our fans down, and will work with Gabriel Rosado to bring him back to the ring very soon. Joseph ‘JoJo’ Diaz Jr. vs. Mercito ‘No Mercy’ Gesta is the new main event.”
Ramirez (44-1, 30 KOs), 31, a Mexican southpaw, is facing a suspension by the California State Athletic Commission.
“I’m suspending Ramirez. He’s getting suspended and fined, probably fined at least 5 grand,” Andy Foster, the executive officer of the California State Athletic Commission, told Fight Freaks Unite. “He blew the whole event up, so I’ll probably suspend him in the neighborhood of six months. It might be eight months. The suspension has to be long enough to cost him one fight because he cost Gabriel Rosado a fight and a training camp.”
Ramirez loses out on a $400,000 purse. Rosado was due make $175,000 and could have added another $100,000 if a new weight could have been agreed upon. A source involved in the event told Fight Freaks Unite that Rosado would not walk away empty handed and would receive at least a portion of his purse considering he was on weight.
Even if the Ramirez and Rosado camps could have agreed on a new weight, Foster said he was not sure he would have approved it given the disparity in size.
“Gabe campaigned most of his career at 154 and 160 and then went to 168, but he had never been to 175,” Foster said. “Ramirez is way bigger than Rosado in general as a person. Then you come in where he misses weight by over 7 pounds, far away from where they’re supposed to be at. I wasn’t sure if I would approve it even if they made a deal.”
Ramirez, a former super middleweight titleholder, fought his last six bouts in the light heavyweight division. He knocked out his first five opponents in a row before taking a one-sided decision loss challenging WBA titleholder Dmitry Bivol in November.
The fight with huge underdog Rosado was supposed to be a comeback fight to get him back in the win column but now he won’t fight for at least another six months given the impeding suspension.
“His body shut down. He worked all (Thursday) night and (Friday) morning. Tried everything,” a source close to the Ramirez camp told Fight Freaks Unite about his efforts to make 175 pounds.
Ramirez issued a statement via social media, apologizing for missing weight and to other, although not to Rosado.
“No excuses,” Ramirez wrote. “I had never missed weight in my 45 pro fights. This is the first and last time. I have always prided myself on being a professional, but today was not my finest moment. On that note, I'd like to apologize to all my fans and supporters, Golden Boy Promotions, and DAZN for this unfortunate event.
“I never gave up trying to make weight, cutting until the final moment, but just couldn't lose enough to make the contracted weight. I am embarrassed and upset by my actions and promise that this will never happen again. I will make the right adjustments and will be back soon.”
Diaz (32-3-1, 15 KOs), 30, of Downey, California, will attempt to rebound from back-to-back one-sided decision losses — a challenge to Devin Haney for the WBC lightweight belt in December 2021 and against unbeaten contender William Zepeda in October.
Gesta (33-3-3, 17 KOs), 35, a Filipino southpaw fighting out of San Diego, is 2-2-1 in his last five fights, including a lopsided decision loss challenging then-WBA lightweight titlist Jorge Linares in 2018.
Rest of the weights
Oscar Duarte 135.6 pounds, Alex Martin 136.4; Eric Tudor 153.4, Damoni Cato-Cain 152.8; Dalis Kaleiopu 130.4, Jonathan Perez 131; Jorge Chavez 126, Bryan Perez 129.4; Patricio Manuel 129, Hien Huynh 125.4.
Joseph Diaz Jr. $80,000, Mercito Gesta $100,000; Oscar Duarte $50,000, Alex Martin $50,000; Eric Tudor $8,000, Damoni Cato-Cain $8,000; Dalis Kaleiopu $4,000, Jonathan Perez $1,500; Jorge Chavez $4,000, Bryan Perez $1,500; Patricio Manuel $2,500, Hien Huynh $3,000.
BetUS Boxing Show
If you missed the BetUS Boxing Show live at 1 p.m. ET on Friday on YouTube, please check out the replay (and also subscribe to the YouTube channel). We previewed and picked the Gabriel “Zurdo” Ramirez-Gabriel Rosado fight — just before it was canceled — as well as the Joseph Diaz Jr.-Mercito Gesta fight from that Golden Boy card. We also took viewer questions and comments! Please check out the show here:
Photos: Cris Esqueda/Golden Boy
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Soooo the massive price increase by DAZN is certainly paying off.
Well that sucks. I’m glad they canceled it. I am not a fan of the “sheep to the slaughter” kind of fight where the “opponent” is so outsized, and you really don’t know it until you see both guys in the ring. Glad they canceled it. Rosado is a true warrior and deserves better than fighting up three weight classes to get a paycheck.