Andy Ruiz vs. Anthony Joshua 2: Hearn signed $40M+ site fee to bring it to Saudi Arabia
By Matt Lieberman: Eddie Hearn received a site fee of more than $40 million to bring the Anthony Joshua vs. Andy Ruiz Jr. 2 rematch to Saudi Arabia, according to Mike Coppinger. It’s a big amount of money Joshua will be getting of the $40 million. This easily could be a career high purse for Joshua. Ruiz’s purse was already set in his rematch clause from his previous fight with IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Joshua (22-1, 21 KOs).
Ruiz’s purse will be in the neighborhood of $9 million. That’s a lot of money compared to what Ruiz Jr. was getting before he fought Joshua for the first time. Ruiz got $6 million for his fight with Joshua on June 1, and that’s enough for him to live well for the rest of his life. The $9 million+ that Ruiz gets for the rematch against Joshua is icing on the cake.
Ruiz Jr. has huge paydays ahead if he beats Joshua again
If Ruiz wins the second fight with Joshua on December 7, then the sky is the limit. Ruiz would be looking at fights against WBC champion Deontay Wilder, lineal champion Tyson Fury, and potentially even a trilogy match against Joshua. That would be a wacky idea for Joshua to take a third fight with Ruiz, but he’s already showing that he’s brave enough to risk everything in fighting a rematch. It obviously helps that Joshua’s net worth is $60 million, according to celebrity net worth. It’s easy to take risks when you already have $60M in the bank.
Joshua will be getting a huge purse for the rematch with Ruiz. Whether that’s around $30 million+ is unclear. Ruiz Jr. obviously won’t be getting anywhere near as much as Joshua, but he’ll at least be fighting him in a neutral venue. If Joshua is getting $31 million, he’s doing alright no matter how bad things might turn out for him.
If Ruiz beats Joshua, then he’ll no longer be constrained by the purse limits written in the original rematch. But it’s also highly unlikely Joshua and Hearn will dare facing Ruiz a third time, because that would be too big of a risk for them to take.
Hearn secures $40 million site fee for Joshua-Ruiz Jr. 2 rematch
“Sources tell…that Eddie Hearn secured a site fee in excess of $40 million to bring Andy Ruiz-Anthony Joshua 2 to Saudi Arabia. Ruiz’s purse was set in the rematch clause, — a fixed guarantee — so he won’t see any of that money, but he does get his neutral site,” said @MikeCoppinger. “Ruiz signed a contract for the original fight that contained a rematch clause that guaranteed him around $9 million for the rematch.”
A second loss for Joshua will be the end game, as far as him fighting Ruiz again. Joshua will have gotten a tremendous payday in the second fight, and it would an insane move to fight him a third time. The likely only way Joshua does that is for a cash out before retiring from boxing.
“I’m following the World Boxing Super Series final, the recent [Amir] Khan fight, the European Golf Tour, Formula 1, WWE, the Saudi Cup (horse racing) and many other huge events and organizations,” said Hearn to Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports News in his reasoning for bringing the Joshua-Ruiz Jr. rematch to Saudi Arabia.
DAZN cut license for Joshua vs. Ruiz Jr. rematch
With the Joshua-Ruiz rematch taking place in Saudi Arabia rather than the U.S or UK, DAZN has reportedly cut the license fee that they pay Hearn for the right to broadcast the fight, says Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports News. The Joshua vs. Ruiz Jr. 2 fight would have done huge numbers with the gate, and helped bring in more subscribers to DAZN if it had taken place in the United States, according to Iole. He believes a $30 million gate would have been possible. The time difference between Saudi Arabia in the United States would likely result in fewer viewers on DAZN. That means less subscribers. So it was a positive in some respects for Joshua and Ruiz to fight in Saudi Arabia, but it wasn’t all good given the reduced license fee by DAZN.
Hearn didn’t want to take the risk of letting Joshua fight in the U.S a second time after the way he blown out in seven rounds by Ruiz Jr. on June 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York. It would have been good money for Hearn and Joshua, but it could have been career over for AJ if he were knocked out again.
Dan Rafael of ESPN.com said this about license fee being reduced by DAZN:
“DAZN, which carried the first fight, pressed for the rematch to be in New York but would pay eight figures less with the fight in Saudi Arabia than New York because of the seven-hour time difference, the source said.”
— Eddie Hearn (@EddieHearn) August 9, 2019
Joshua could turn his career around with a victory over Ruiz Jr. in Saudi Arabia on December 7th, but he could also see his career finished as well. One big shot from Ruiz, it could be over for Joshua. He complained about how he was never able to recover from a left hook Ruiz hurt him with in round three in their fight on June 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York. If all it takes from Ruiz is one big shot again, then it could be ends-ville for AJ.
Joshua will get a lot of money for the fight in the desert of Saudi Arabia, but he won’t have his belts back. This could be a huge historic win for Joshua if he can beat Ruiz, and win back his IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles without controversy. Joshua will likely be the favorite once again despite having lost the first fight. The odds-makers will be counting on Joshua having corrected the mistakes he made in the first fight to make sure he comes out on top against Ruiz.
Joshua realizes he can’t hurt Ruiz says trainer Ronnie Shields
“I think he stole Joshua’s heart when Joshua hit him and dropped him, and he got right back up like nothing happened,” said trainer Ronnie Shields to Fighthype. “I think that surprised Joshua, and I think Joshua realizes he can’t hurt this guy. Joshua hit him with some good shots, and dropped him, but he didn’t do anything to him. And he hit Joshua, and Joshua couldn’t take it,” said Shields.
Joshua must hurt Ruiz to keep him off of him in the rematch, because he’s going to be on the attack the entire time. In an interview with JD Sport, Joshua hinted that he’s going to use movement to try and beat Ruiz in the rematch. He said there’s no way that Ruiz can keep up with his fast feet.
In a photo on snapchat this week, Joshua showed a pair of photos of his physique, and he’s looking considerably less muscular now than he did last June for his fight with Ruiz. With four months to go, Joshua can lose a tremendous amount of muscle if he chooses to work on his cardio. However, that doesn’t mean he’s going to win. His problem in the Ruiz fight was the hand speed of the talented American, and that fact that was getting hurt by his shots. That’s not going to change for the rematch. Joshua’s chin won’t improve, and Ruiz won’t suddenly lose his hand speed.
“If you put me and Ruiz in a machine, nine times out of ten I should beat him. That was just his night. He got the win and we get to do it again at the end of the year,” said Joshua earlier this week to JD Sport.