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Andy Ruiz Jr. is NO Buster Douglas

Anthony Joshua

By Hector Gonzalez: Last week before Andy Ruiz Jr. shocked the world by upsetting Anthony Joshua via a 7 round stoppage, Ruiz Jr. was being compared to Butterbean. What disrespect. Eric “Butterbean” Esch made a career fighting 4 round fights and knocking out his opponents in a backyard brawl style. The problem is that Andy Ruiz Jr., unlike Butterbean, goes 12 rounds and barely looks tired. He possibly has the best gas tank in the heavyweight division.

Now, after Saturday’s upset, Ruiz Jr. is all of a sudden compared to Buster Douglas. But in the words of Andy Ruiz Jr. himself after the ESPN commentator Steven A. Smith compared him to Butterbean, “I encourage you to do your research before insulting my career. I know boxing isn’t your lane but if you are gonna talk about boxing, please study and know what you are saying.” It only takes some research to understand that he’s a bonafide champion. He is not a Buster Douglas story. Andy Ruiz Jr. is, in fact, a legitimate champion in every sense of the word.

Buster Douglas comparison debunked

First off, let’s debunk the Buster Douglas comparison. The comparison derives from the fact that both Buster Douglas and Andy Ruiz Jr. were significant underdogs against their opponents. Other than that, there is no comparison between the two, both in how they fight and how the upsets came about. On February 11th, 1990, Buster Douglas was the 45/1 underdog when he shocked the world by upsetting Mike Tyson via a 10th round KO. By this time Buster Douglas already had 4 loses, including being knocked out. Additionally, Mike Tyson was a 23 year old train wreck, dealing with public humiliation. Andy Ruiz, on the other hand, was the 11/1 underdog, who had never even hit the canvas before last Saturday. Furthermore, his only loss was a controversial one, or at the very least, a razor thin loss to Joseph Parker in 2016 …in New Zealand, Parker’s backyard. Not to take anything away from Buster Douglas, but Andy Ruiz Jr. has been boxing since the age of 6, and Olympian with a decorated amateur record. With all due respect to Buster Douglas, he was already a journeyman when he faced Mike Tyson. To put it bluntly, Buster Douglas’ victory over Mike Tyson was a combination of bad luck, self-destructive behavior, and bad management. Andy Ruiz Jr.’s victory is the result of him being the better boxer over Anthony Joshua, simple and plain.

Boxing experts thought Ruiz Jr. had a chance

Many boxing insiders were saying before the fight that although Anthony Joshua should win the fight on paper, Andy Ruiz Jr. could realistically beat Anthony Joshua. Oscar De la Hoya, Freddie Roach, Paulie Malignaggi, etc. had publicly commented on the danger that Ruiz Jr. possesses. Maybe they didn’t expect him to win, but they understood the danger was real and if there was a doubt in regards to his victory. It was not because of lack of ability, it was simple because he hadn’t had his shine yet. The unraveling hadn’t happened yet. In other words, we hadn’t seen what he was capable of up to this point.

Ruiz is similar to Marquez and Pacquiao

If you really want a fair comparison, Andy Ruiz Jr. reminds me of the combination punching of Juan Manuel Marquez. He also reminds me of Manny Pacquiao in that he beats bigger and stronger opponents with speed. In fact, that is not a coincidence. He was trained by Freddie Roach for 7 years.

If you think that Andy Ruiz Jr. will lose the rematch with Anthony Joshua by default, because he’s short and fat, then you’re not following. Even George Foreman has come out publicly and discouraged Anthony Joshua from taking the rematch before addressing the flaws in his fighting style. Furthermore, on paper Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury appear to be the favorites if they were to meet Andy Ruiz Jr. However, I wouldn’t rule out his chances against either of them.

to contact the writer email Hector Gonzalez at

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