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‘Joshua is OVERRATED’ – Bob Arum says – ‘Andy wins again’

Anthony Joshua

By Scott Gilfoid: Bob Arum is siding with heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr. to once again deal Matchroom fighter Anthony Joshua his second career defeating in eight days from now on December 7 in Saudi Arabia.

Top Rank promoter Arum used to promote Ruiz (33-1, 22 KOs), and he feels that the combination of hand speed and his short stature will be cause Joshua problems and lead to him getting knocked out once again.

Arum says he sees Joshua as ‘OVERRATED”. Additionally, Arum says Ruiz Jr. is ‘Underrated.”

Arum isn’t the only one that views the 29-year-old Joshua as not being as good as the hype built about him. The tell tale signs were already there long before Joshua lost to Ruiz that he wasn’t what his loyal fans and his promoters at Matchroom Boxing thought he was. These fights in particular exposed Joshua as being weak in the chin, and not having the stamina to fight hard without gassing:

  • Dillian Whyte
  • Carlo Takam
  • Wladimir Klitschko
  • Alexander Povetkin
  • Andy Ruiz Jr

Andy Ruiz beats “overrated” Joshua again – Arum

“I think Andy wins again. I think Joshua is overrated,” said Arum to Fighthype in analyzing the Joshua vs. Ruiz rematch. “I think Andy is underappreciated. He fought most of his fights with us, and I know how good he is.

“He has a low center of gravity, which is good against a big heavyweight. But again, at the back of Joshua’s mind is the fact that he got knocked out by this guy. So that’s a factor. How big a factor, I don’t know,” said Arum.

What made a lot of boxing fans overlook Ruiz, besides his physique, was the fact that they noticed that he’d lost to former Joshua victim Joseph Parker in the past.

What fans don’t know is Ruiz fought well enough to beat Parker by a wide margin in their fight in 2016. The match took place in Parker’s homeland of New Zealand, and the scoring was in his favor in rounds that appeared to be for Ruiz. Boxing News 24 scored the fight 10 rounds to 2 in favor of Ruiz.

Parker had home advantage against Ruiz

The key point about Ruiz’s loss to Parker is the fact that the bout took place in New Zealand in front of Joseph’s fans. If Ruiz could do it all again, he likely wouldn’t have agreed to fight Parker in New Zealand, because he was asking for trouble.

He was getting the better of Parker throughout the fight. In the second half of the fight, Parker faded, and took major punishment. If the fight had taken place in a neutral venue, Ruiz likely would have won easily.

It would have been a different story if Ruiz was undefeated at 33-0 at the time he got the fight with Joshua rather than 32-1. However, it’s likely that Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn would have never picked Ruiz if for Joshua if he was unbeaten. Hearn has always been selective in who he matches Joshua against.

Malignaggi – There’s more to Ruiz than people have seen

“I expect to see a better version of themselves, because the first fight didn’t last long enough,” said Malignaggi to Boxing Social about the Joshua vs. Ruiz rematch. “I think Ruiz was more ready the first time around, because he had just knocked out [Alexander] Dimitrenko before he got the Joshua fight.

“I do think there’s a lot more to Ruiz than people have seen, and he’ll be able to see that in the rematch. Joshua will resist more, and come out and fire better. So I think both guys will show better just from that,” said Malignaggi.

Joshua will be more careful in the rematch than he was in the first fight, and he’ll likely try and fight conservatively early on. However, Joshua isn’t going to be able to control his basic instincts to want to slug once the going gets tough. Once Ruiz starts embarrassing Joshua, he’ll fight back like he’s always done.

Joshua won’t be able to keep from brawling Ruiz

Joshua jabbing, tying up and moving to his right all night won’t keep Ruiz from getting to him to land his big shots. It didn’t work for Parker. Although it was successful at times for Parker, he was still beaten to the punch, outworked and hit with the harder shots by Ruiz. The scoring was atrocious. With that kind of judging, Ruiz needed a knockout.

In Joshua’s losses in the amateur ranks, he always brawled when he was getting worked over. Joshua could never control himself. He’s not capable of holding back when he’s getting pressured, and that’s what led to Joshua struggling against these fighters:

  • Mihai Nistor
  • Erislandy Savon
  • Roberto Cammerelle
  • Magomedrasul Majidov
  • Ivan Dychko
  • Zhang Zhilei

Joshua lost to Nistor and Majidov, but he should have lost to all of those guys. He got favorable scoring in the 2012 LONDON Olympics in fight that a lot of boxing fans felt that he lost.

Ruiz says the Joshua fight could be harder 

“December 7 we have to pressure, work the body, break him down. Especially his mentality,” said Ruiz to “We’ve got to see where he’s at because all the pressure is on him.

“The pressure isn’t on me because I followed my dream, made my dreams come true. Of course I want more – I want the legacy of Andy Ruiz Jr. One punch can change the fight. That’s what happened on June 1. It might be a little harder than the first time. I’ve got to show my skills, and my talent.,” said Ruiz.

Joshua is likely going to follow the Parker blueprint in how to fight Ruiz by doing the following:

  • Jabbing
  • Throwing quick combinations
  • HOLDING frequently
  • Always moving to his right

The clinching and moving to his right was what gave Ruiz the most problems, as he was forced to pursue Parker around the ring. When Ruiz would get in range to throw, Parker would tie him up.

At times, Ruiz wasn’t ready for when Parker would throw a right hand from the outside. Even with Parker doing all that, I had Ruiz easily winning the fight. He was catching Parker the better shots, and he totally dominated him in the second part of the fight.

What’ll make it harder for Joshua to do what Parker did is his stamina and chin not being good enough to handle the shots and the fast pace from Ruiz.

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