Ray Beltran looks to achieve two dreams with world title win
Sinaloa, Mexico-born lightweight title challenger and current contender Ray Beltran, 34-7-1 (21), is hoping the third time is the charm, as he looks to finally wrap a world title belt around his waist.
Beltran has had two cracks at a world title but has come up short both times. He’s hoping the third time will see the exciting, longtime contender leave the ring as a champion.
Beltran will meet Paulus Moses, 40-3 (25), for the vacant WBO world lightweight title. The bout will headline a “Top Rank Boxing on ESPN” card, on February 16, at the Grand Sierra Resort and Casino in Reno, Nevada.
Beltran, who resides in Phoenix, Arizona, is as hot as one can get right now, having won four of his last five fights by stoppage. Beltran comes into this bout off a majority decision win over Bryan Vasquez in his most recent fight, last August, in Los Angeles.
While every boxer dreams of winning a world title, Beltran is in the process of trying to obtain a United States green card and adding “world champion” to his resume would do a lot for him and his cause.
Beltran first challenged for a world title in September 2013, when he traveled to Glasgow, Scotland, but came up short in a highly controversial draw against hometown champion Ricky Burns, in a fight almost everyone though Beltran won.
In his second title try, in November of 2014, Beltran lost a unanimous decision to pound-for-pounder Terence Crawford in the champion’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.
At 36, Crawford knows the time is now, for both practical and professional reasons, and he is very motivated to achieve both goals.
In a recent interview, Beltran made it clear that he plans bring his dreams to fruition and leave Reno as a champion.
“I believe God has plans for everybody. I believe this is it for me and my team, to become a world champion, at this point, not just for me but for all the hard-working people, especially immigrants, who come to this great nation to make their dreams come true, working hard and never giving up,” Beltran said. “I hope my story and my struggle can inspire others to achieve their dreams and to motivate them to never give up.”
And while Beltran knows he is in for a tough fight against the former WBA champion Moses, he is excited to see his near-two-decade dream come true.
“I’m excited about this fight for many reasons,” Beltran said. “I’m fighting for myself. For 18 years, I have worked to become a world champion. I am fighting for my family, my wife and for my children to be proud of me. When you’re a champion, you are a champion forever. I am fighting for my team, the people who have been with me from the start. It’s easy when you are on your way up to have fans but my true fans have been with me at my lowest and stayed through my highs in life. This fight means everything to me. A victory will also seal my green card. For me to be world champion and a citizen of this country, this is my dream.”
Beltran has been up to the plate for a world title shot before but, this time, he feels nothing will stop him.
“Little by little, I am making my dreams come true,” said Beltran. “I have battled a lot in my career. I have a big goal to be a world champion and nothing is going to get in my way.”