At the age of 28, Jose is a seven-year pro. A former IBF junior lightweight world champion, he won the title in June, 2015, and made two successful title defenses.
Before his debut, he was an international amateur standout – he represented Puerto Rico in the 2008 Olympic Games and was a gold medalist at the 2010 Central American & Caribbean Games. He was also a three-time Puerto Rican national amateur champion.
He recently signed a promotional contract with Top Rank, and is now moving up to the lightweight division.
Rick Torres, who heads the Victory Sports & Entertainment management team with Mike Leanardi, said, “Making 130 was becoming a struggle for Jose over the past couple of fights, and he even thought at one point that he would be moving to 135 prior to the Davis fight. That target kept on being moved around a bit, which I think caused some issues with his training because he thought he was moving up and then turned around and he was fighting at 130.
“I think fighting at 135 is what he is looking forward to, and he won’t have to kill himself to make the weight. I think he will definitely be stronger and more of a force at that weight class.
“I think he was definitely drained at the weight but also, as I mentioned, he had a lot of inactivity. He fought like, twice in a two-year period and the lack of activity, especially for a fighter like Jose who is a slick guy who really depends on timing and rhythm – guys like that really need activity in order to stay sharp, and he hadn’t been active. There had been indications previously that there would be fights available to him at 135 so he was already of the mindset that he was going to 135, and then it turned around and the fight became a fight at 130.
“Jose isn’t an excuse maker, but he was already having difficulty making 130 and the thought process was that he would not have to do that anymore, and then all of a sudden he had to, so that obviously impacted his performance we feel.”
In an earlier interview, Jose said through an interpreter, “I’m a very versatile fighter. I believe that I have the skills to be a boxer, and also and in-fighter.
“They call me ‘The Sniper.’A friend of mine was watching one of my fights, and he said that I looked so sharp that I looked like a francotirador, which in English is ‘sniper.’ “