Regis Prograis lists keys to victory for Maurice Hooker-Jose Ramirez fight, talks clash with Josh Taylor

first_imgWBO champion Maurice Hooker (26-0-3, 17 KOs) faces WBC titleholder Jose Ramirez (24-0, 16 KOs) at the College Park Center in Arlington, TX. on Saturday night, with Prograis (24-0, 20 KOs) putting his WBA belt up against IBF titleholder Josh Taylor (15-0, 12 KOs) this fall and the winners expected to face each other to give the division one champion, one face, one name.Join DAZN and watch Hooker vs. Ramirez on July 27“It’s perfect,” Prograis told Sporting News. “Timing is everything and I’m in a real good time right now. These big fights are happening at 140 (pounds) right now.“I always had it in my mind that I was going to run through this tournament (World Boxing Super Series), get through Josh Taylor — he’s the second-best fighter in the division — and then after that, I’m going to fight the winner of Ramirez-Hooker and it looks like everything is happening just the way I envisioned it happening,” he continued. “We’ll see how it plays out, but hopefully it plays out the way I envisioned it.”Prograis plans on approaching the WBSS super lightweight final against Taylor like he has every pro bout before it — by figuring his opponent out in real-time and being ready to adjust on the fly.“I never have a game plan going into the fight — never,” Prograis insisted. “Of course, you go out there and establish a rhythm, get a jab going and then after that, I just go off my instincts. I just do me. I have so many different tools, so many different things that I could do. I just do what I gotta do — that’s all.“When me and Josh Taylor got in the ring (in May), he said ‘You should be ready for a war,’” he continued. “I was like, ‘Alright … if that’s what you want from me, alright.’ Nobody has ever seen the dog fight come out of me.“I definitely think Josh Taylor is a top-class fighter and I don’t put anything past him, but I just feel like right now, I’m on a different level.”Before Prograis gets to test that belief out, he’ll be in attendance for the Hooker-Ramirez fight on Saturday night to get a closer look at who he could be facing for undisputed acclaim.Here, Prograis dons his analyst hat for Sporting News and punches up the keys to victory for each Hooker and Ramirez, before weighing in with his final prediction.Keys to victory for Ramirez”I feel like he just gotta stay busy. That’s the thing. With (Hooker), he likes to fight at a slow pace. I think Ramirez will have to be real, real busy and have a big output without getting caught with nothing big, basically.”I think he’ll have to push him around because Hooker likes to fight at his own pace. He doesn’t fight at a high pace — he fights at a real slow pace. He likes to flick his jab out and throw a big right hand on top of that. I think, for Ramirez, he’ll have to just basically go in there and try to push him around, boss him around and have a high output.”Keys to victory for Hooker”Hooker is the total opposite. I think that he would have to be the boss and establish a real good jab and definitely move his feet — move around and just keep Ramirez off balance with the jab and that big right hand. I think he’ll just have to keep throwing that. I think that will be his main (weapon).”Don’t let (Ramirez) push him back when he comes in, but at the same time, he’ll have to move his feet and just out-box him, basically. Keep the jab in his face and keep landing the big right hand.”I think Ramirez will try to suck the wind out of him by hitting him with a body shot, but don’t let him even get that close. Keep him on the outside with the jab and keep occasionally putting the right hand on him and fight at his pace.” Prediction”I think it will be will versus will in this fight. Whoever has a strong will, will win. I think (this fight will go the distance). I don’t think neither one of them will get knocked out. None of them have ever been knocked out before, but both of them have actually been dropped.”I think we will see some knockdowns and if a knockdown happens, I think Hooker will probably get knocked down from Ramirez. But at the same time, Ramirez could get knocked down too because he likes to rush in. I think it will be an exciting fight and I really feel like both of them will take knockdowns in this fight. But I still lean more towards Ramirez.I lean more toward Ramirez because he could be a little more active. I think he’s a better all-around skilled fighter, but at the same time, Hooker has a big right hand. He has a big, sneaky right hand. He’s long, he’s tall and I think maybe he could out-box Ramirez, keep him off guard and then hit him with the big right hand. I think it’s a 50-50 fight, but I lean a little more toward Ramirez.” The stars are aligned in the super lightweight division and Regis Prograis knows it.Four undefeated champions fighting in a pair of unification bouts, with the road to undisputed glory lit with high beams … what’s there not to love about that?last_img

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