Jose Ramirez has his first set of conflicting obligations as a unified champion. Two weeks after the WBO ordered him to defend the belt he took from Maurice Hooker against mandatory challenger Jack Catterall, the WBC chimed in to kick off a one-month negotiation period with Viktor Postol. Should the two fail to come to terms by September 20th, a purse bid will be held in Mexico City.
Odds are, Postol (31-2, 12 KO) will have to wait. Catterall (24-0, 13 KO) has been a mandatory challenger for three months longer and, critically, was part of the contract negotiations that allowed Ramirez (25-0, 17 KO) to unify with Hooker last month. Ramirez could still theoretically get an exception to fight either one in his planned defense in “November or December.”
Postol seems like the more stylistically interesting of the two from where I’m sitting. The Ukrainian had one of the faster rises and falls in recent memory, coming out of nowhere to knock out Lucas Matthysse before getting absolutely routed by Terence Crawford in his next fight. He barely scraped past what was supposed to be a get-well opponent in Jamshidbek Najmiddinov, but put on a heroic effort against Josh Taylor in defeat. He’s since beaten Siar Ozgul and Mohamed Mimoune, the latter in a final eliminator.