All fighters have a story, a journey that has brought them to where they are now in the sweet science. Such is the case with Phoenix fighter Ray Beltran, perhaps one of the most underrated fighters to enter the ring. Beltran knows the sacrifice both in the ring and out of the ring. His career has been a rollercoaster ride filled with high’s and lows.
Born in Los Mochis, Mexico, a city known for producing boxing champions and tough economic times, Beltran makes it a point to never forget his roots. Beltran is by far one of the most humble fighters to enter the square ring, he says from his beginnings, “I came from dirt” and knows what living in poverty is like, referencing his childhood growing up in Mexico. His father worked hard and made sacrifices, as well as his entire family before they moved to the United States in search of a better life.
His professional career began in 1999, which is a long time to be fighting ring life wise. Beltran has a record of 29 wins, 7 defeats, 1 draw, 17 of his wins coming by way of knockout. In boxing, a loss on a record is the difference between a shot at a title and a huge payday. Beltran without a doubt lost some fights, but at the very least a few of his losses were fights that he won.
Beltran has a love for boxing and a hate for the sport too, he will voice his opinion on some of his losses, and with good reason and validity. Beltran is on the backside of his career, but he is still a force and has unfinished business in the ring.
What many don’t know about Ray Beltran, is the fact he sparred with Manny Pacquiao for over a decade. He remains good friends with Pacquiao and the two remain in contact to this day.
The seesaw career of Beltran has been good to him for the most part, it has put him on the world stage and provided a good life for his family. His family is the reason he fights, in turn, he draws strength from it.
In 2012, Beltran proved his worth by defeating a favored Hank Lundy and capturing the NABF lightweight title. Beltran suffered a cut in round 3 but managed to go the distance and winning by majority decision on the scorecards. Beltran was gaining momentum, posting wins over Ji-Hoon Kim and Alejandro Rodriguez that would align him with a fight with Ricky Burns and the WBO lightweight title.
In 2013, Beltran would meet Ricky Burns in the ring, and a shot at the WBO lightweight title in Glasgow, Scotland. Beltran dominated the fight, breaking Burns’ jaw with a fierce blow in round 2, and also dropping Burns to the canvas for a count in round 8. The fight would go the distance and it appeared Beltran would be crowned the champion until the scorecards were read. The judges somehow scored the fight a draw, one judge having scored the bout even at 114-114.
In 2015, Beltran was suspended and fined by the Nevada Athletic Commission for testing positive for the anabolic steroid stanozolol after his win over Takahiro Ao in Las Vegas. Beltran makes no excuses and accepted the suspension, it has been reported that he was not aware of taking any banned substance.
For Beltran, who knows what the future holds. He has continued to train and is ready to fight, it will be an uphill battle for a shot at a title, but this place is no stranger to him. He has been in this position for most of his career and will fight anyone for a shot at a title. One thing we can count on is that Beltran will be back in the ring, most likely with a new attitude and a ton of desire.