The undercards have been squared away for a pair of significant boxing cards controlled by manager/adviser Al Haymon on Oct. 14.
Unbeaten junior welterweight Eddie Ramirez (17-0, 11 KOs) will take a step up in the level of his opposition when he takes on former lightweight world titleholder Antonio DeMarco (32-6-1, 23 KOs) in a scheduled 10-round fight that will open the Premier Boxing Champions telecast (Fox and Fox Deportes, 7:30 p.m. ET) at the StubHub Center in Carson, California.
The fight will support the two featherweight world title bouts on the card — Leo Santa Cruz’s defense against Chris Avalos in the main event and Abner Mares’ defense of his secondary belt against Andres Gutierrez in the co-feature. If Santa Cruz and Mares retain their belts, they are due to meet in a rematch in early 2018.
Ramirez, 25, of Chicago, knocked Ryan Karl from the undefeated ranks with a ninth-round knockout in February and then won a split decision over veteran Erick Bone in June. Now comes DeMarco, 31, of Mexico, who has vast experience.
“I’m trying to make a statement, and if I’m able to take him out, I’ll take him out,” Ramirez said. “But I’m also going to be smart at the same time. He’s a veteran southpaw and a former champion, but his time is up, and my time is now. So we’re prepared for whatever comes our way.
“I’ll do whatever it takes to win. I’ve been in a lot of tough fights, but they’ve all been worth it to get me prepared to become a world champion. I’ve been sparring with some big, tough guys, and I’m ready to take on another one to get up there with the top fighters in the division.”
DeMarco won a world title by 11th-round knockout of Jorge Linares in a dramatic comeback in 2011 and made two successful defenses before losing it by eighth-round knockout to Adrien Broner in 2012.
DeMarco is coming off a decision win against Luis Solis in February, a victory that ended a three-fight losing streak, including a junior welterweight world title fight to Jessie Vargas in 2014.
“This is a very important fight at this point for my career,” DeMarco said. “I’m going to prove that I still have a lot to give in this sport and this wide-open division. Ramirez is a young, undefeated fighter and a very tough opponent, but I’ve been in a lot of big fights, and as a former champion, I definitely believe that he has never faced an experienced southpaw opponent like me. I’ll wear him down, round by round, and if the knockout presents itself, I’ll definitely go for it.
“I know he’s a dangerous fighter, but I’m very calm and confident because of the experience I’ve gained and the camp I’m having. I know the truth about myself, and emotionally and physically, I’m 100 percent.”
Also announced was that former junior middleweight world title challenger Tony Harrison (24-2, 20 KOs), 27, of Detroit, will take on Paul Valenzuela Jr. (20-5, 14 KOs), 30, of Mexico, in a 10-round middleweight scrap, also on Oct. 14, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, in a nontelevised match.
That card, on Showtime (10 p.m. ET), features three televised junior middleweight world title bouts: Erislandy Lara-Terrell Gausha, Jermell Charlo-Erickson Lubin and Jarrett Hurd-Austin Trout.
Harrison is aiming to rebound from a ninth-round knockout loss to Hurd in a vacant world title fight in February. Hernandez is also seeking to shake off a defeat, an 11-round decision to “Silky” Wilky Campfort in March.
In another undercard bout, women’s featherweight world titleholder Cindy Serrano (26-5-3, 10 KOs), 35, of Brooklyn — the older sister of five-division world titleholder Amanda Serrano — will face an opponent to be determined in an eight-rounder.
There will also be several prospects on the card: 2016 Haitian Olympian Richardson Hitchins (2-0, 1 KO), who is from Brooklyn but represented his parents’ home country at the Rio de Janeiro Games, in a four-round welterweight fight against an opponent to be determined; Brooklyn’s Julian Sosa (9-0-1, 3 KOs) in a six-round welterweight fight against an opponent to be determined; Brooklyn’s Chordale Booker (7-0, 4 KOs) against Malcolm McAllister (9-0, 8 KOs), of Long Beach, California, in an eight-round junior middleweight fight; Justin Hurd (3-0, 3 KOs), the younger brother of Jarrett Hurd, in a six-round junior middleweight bout against Steven Andrade (3-2, 2 KOs), of Cartersville, Georgia; and Philadelphia junior bantamweight Dylan Price (3-0, 3 KOs) against a foe to be determined in a four-round bout.