Andy Ruiz Jr. to Dillian Whyte: ‘You didn’t want the smoke. I’m moving on’
By Scott Gilfoid: Andy Ruiz Jr. said on social media today that Dillian Whyte basically ducked him, and he plans on moving on to his next opponent. Ruiz can’t afford to play games with Whyte or his promoters at Mathroom Boxing. Andy won’t stall out his career wasting time on a fight that won’t get made.
The former IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Ruiz Jr. (33-2, 22 KOs) says he’ll have a “BIG announcement coming soon” on his next fight. Ruiz isn’t saying who his next opponent will be, but it’s got to someone talented for him to be saying it’ll be a “big announcement.” Gilfoid thinks it’ll be one of these talents:
- Oscar Rivas
- Luis Ortiz
- Michael Hunter
- Filip Hrgovic
- Joseph Parker
- Adam Kownacki
Was Hearn ever seriously interested in using Ruiz for Whyte?
Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn likely was never going to give Ruiz his asking price, because he already had Alexander Povetkin waiting in the wings to fight him. If Povetkin wasn’t an option, then Hearn would have likely given Ruiz the $5 million or whatever his asking price is to take the fight with Whyte.
What Hearn doesn’t realize is the British boxing fans don’t want to see Whyte fight Povetkin. Maybe if that fight took place 10 years ago when Povetkin still a good fighter, then maybe, but not now. Povetkin is looking shot to pieces at this point in his career.
With Ruiz Jr. no longer an option, Whyte (27-1, 18 KOs) will now fight 40-year-old Alexander Povetkin next. This is arguably the fight that Hearn wanted all along. Povetkin is no threat to beating Whyte, so it keeps his career afloat for a little while longer.
Alexander Povetkin with 1 win in last 3 fights
Povetkin has won only ONCE in his last three fights. In other words, Povetkin’s record is 1-1-1 since 2018. That’s not exactly good unless Hearn is counting on the casual boxing fans not bothering to look up Povetkin’s record when they decide whether to order Whyte-Povetkin on Sky Box Office.
That’s not a great fight, given that Povetkin (35-2-1, 24 KOs) is coming off of a 10 round draw against Michael Hunter on December 7 in Saudi Arabia. Even if you’re one of the boxing fans that felt that the draw was justified, it was still a bad performance by Povetkin.
He looked old in getting battered by Hunter, and outworked. Hunter slipped up by not continuing to unload on Povetkin when he had him on the verge of being knocked out in the first round.
If Hunter had done the same thing in any of the remaining nine rounds of the fight, he likely would have stopped Povetkin. The Russian 2004 Olympic gold medalist Povetkin was too slow to defend himself when Hunter would flurry on him from time to time.
Whyte expected to be the favorite against Povetkin
The good news for Povetkin is Whyte doesn’t ever throw flurries. He’s a one punch at a time guy, who doesn’t have the engine to unload on his opponents in the same way that the talented 2012 U.S Olympian Hunter does.
It’s pretty easy to figure out who would win in a fight between Ruiz and Whyte. As we saw in the past, Anthony Joshua destroyed Whyte in 2015 in leading him on the canvas in a 7th round knockout. In turn, Ruiz beat Joshua by a 7th round knockout. That tells you everything in predicting the outcome for a fight between Ruiz and Whyte.
If Matchroom Boxing plans on staging the Whyte vs. Povetkin fight as a headliner on Sky Box Office PPV, it’ll be interesting to see how many buys it winds up with.
Ruiz = a bad style match-up for Whyte
If you look at it from Whyte’s perspective, it’s probably a good thing that he doesn’t fight Ruiz Jr. because he over his head against him. Ruiz is a MUCH better fighter than Whyte, and there’s really no comparison between the two.
Whyte’s promoter Eddie Hearn said Ruiz Jr. turned down his initial offer, and he was planning on increasing the next offer. Whether Hearn did or not is unclear. If so, then the second offer wasn’t big enough, and Hearn might not have wanted to Ruiz the money he was looking to get.
By now Hearn has to realize that Ruiz is a big attraction in the U.S and likely in the UK, and a fight between him and Whyte would be a headliner on Sky Box Office. Ruiz wouldn’t have agreed to fight Whyte in the UK though.
It would be too risky for Ruiz to fight Whyte in Britain. Whyte’ s fight against Oscar Rivas was a complete mess last July in London, and the same goes for Dillian’s match against Joseph Parker. In that fight the referee gave Whyte credit for a knockdown from a head-butt.
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