Andy Ruiz Jr. targeting Whyte, Fury, Wilder & Parker
By Kenneth Friedman: Andy Ruiz Jr. is vowing to come back strong and fully focused for his next fight. Former IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Ruiz Jr. says he’s interested in fights against Dillian Whyte, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury and Joseph Parker.
Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn is trying to setup a fight between Ruiz Jr. and Whyte (27-1, 18 KOs) for April. He made Ruiz a “chunky” seven-figure offer, and he’s negotiating with his adviser Al Haymon to see if he can make that fight a reality. If it gets made, it’ll take place in the U.S, potentially in Las Vegas.
Ruiz wants to position himself for third fight with Joshua
With win over one or two of these guys, Ruiz (33-2, 22 KOs) believes he’ll be in a position to negotiate a trilogy match against Anthony Joshua. That’s the match that Ruiz wants more than anything, so he can redeem himself from his loss to the British fighter last December.
Andy embarrassed himself against Joshua by coming into the rematch in Saudi Arabia out of shape, and not ready to defend his titles against the motivated ex-champion. In Ruiz’s case, he put too much weight on after his upset 7th round stoppage win over Joshua on June 1, and then failed to work hard enough to lose it all.
Ruiz is saying he’s going to come in shape, and fully focused when he returns to the ring in 2020.
Ruiz talks about what’s next for him
“There’s a lot out there,” Ruiz said to Dank City in talking about the fights he wants. “There is Tyson Fury, [Deontay] Wilder, there’s Whyte, and there’s Parker. But I’ll fight anybody. Probably Wilder or Fury, one of those tall guys,” said Ruiz when asked what fighter fits his style for his next fight.
“I am going to use it as motivation because a lot of things happened in that camp,” said Ruiz Jr. to Dank City. “And I wasn’t really focused on how I should have, but of course it gives me the motivation to come back stronger, fitter, and for sure I’m going to win, and we’re going to negotiate the third fight,” said Ruiz about wanting to fight Joshua again.
“It was my dream to become the first Mexican heavyweight champion of the world, and I did it,” said Ruiz. “I would train harder, listen to my trainers, listen to my dad, and listen to my team,” said Ruiz when asked what he would do different if he could change things before his last fight with Joshua. ”
“Of course, I would have been stronger, and I would have won the fight, but I was taking his punches,” said Ruiz. “He didn’t hurt me besides giving me a cut, but we would have fought through.”
It would be good for Ruiz to start small for his next fight by taking the Whyte match that Hearn is trying to setup with Haymon. If Ruiz beats Whyte, that would put him in line to face the winner of the Wilder vs. Fury 2 rematch.
Those two could be facing each other two times in 2020, but it’s possible that Ruiz could still face the winner this year. He’s with Premier Boxing Champions, the same company that Wilder is with.
Andy Ruiz wants to change things
“Not having as many people around,” Ruiz said in what he would change for the next fight big fight. “There were people that just want to be your friend. Those are one of the things I want to be careful about. I gotta get back to work, continue to do what I’m doing, and live healthy and train. We have to exercise, watch what we eat. I think it’s important to live well, and continue what we’re doing,” said Ruiz.
“I try to learn how to go inside, and find tricks for ways to get in there to throw your combinations,” said Ruiz Jr. “Just to stay focused,” said Ruiz when asked what advice he would give other fighters.
“A lot of people are going to go through what I went through, and just listen to the guys that want the best for you. You’re going to know who’s there, and who’s going to come, and who’s going to go. So just be careful about that, and just focus
“There’s always going to be haters, and there’s always going to be doubters,” said Ruiz Jr. “They’re going to see a new Andy, a new Andy that’s focused. The same Andy that became the first Mexican heavyweight champion. So even better,” said Ruiz.
Getting in shape and staying in good condition in between fights would be an excellent start for Ruiz if he wants to change things in his life. He’s the first one to admit that he didn’t train the way he needed to for the rematch with Joshua, but he also let himself get too heavy after his win over the British fighter last June.
Some fighters can slack off a little after a big win, and then take the weight off in camp.