Ray Beltran hopes to shine at MSG as he continues title trek
“Sugar” Ray Beltran, 32-7-1 (20), will face Jonathan “The Last Inca” Maicelo, 25-2 (12), tonight in at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
The Sinaloa, Mexico-born lightweight is hoping the third time is the charm as he looks to finally wrap a world title belt around his waist.
Beltran vs. Maicelo will be the chief support bout to the Terence Crawford-Felix Diaz world junior welterweight championship matchup (HBO, 10:15 p.m. ET/ PT).
The event will also feature the pride of Newark and 2016 U.S. Olympic silver medalist Shakur Stevenson on the non-televised portion of the undercard.
Beltran, a native of Ahome, Mexico, who resides in Phoenix, Arizona, is as hot as one can get right now, having won his last three fights by stoppage. Beltran, a two-time lightweight world title challenger, comes into this bout off of a sensational, one-punch, seventh round knockout of once-beaten Mason Menard in an NABF/NABO lightweight title fight on the undercard of the Crawford-John Molina Jr. title bout last December.
In a recent interview, Beltran said he hopes to use this large stage as another showcase for him to make his case that he deserves to be in against one of the world lightweight champions soon.
“We are ready for this fight. It is a very important fight for the whole team because it will be the fight that will take us to the opportunity of battling for a world title,” said Beltran. “We are focused on winning. We are coming to fight and give a great show to all the fans. I don’t just want to win. I want to look good and win convincingly.”
Beltran has garnered a strong following in Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, impressing fans with his gutsy decision loss to their hometown hero in 2014. He then returned in December of last year impressing the Omaha faithful with the win over Menard.
Beltran, who trains out of Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, California, appreciates the Nebraska love but he is looking forward to fighting in the historic Madison Square Garden.
“Little by little, I am making my dreams come true. I have battled a lot in my career. We have fulfilled many of our goals, like now, that we are going to fight at Madison Square Garden. Being able to fight in a historical place, where all the greats have fought, is a dream come true.”