By Charles Brun: Dillian Whyte disapproves of former unified heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr and his choice of opponent in selecting 40-year-old Chris Arreola for his next fight on May 1st on Fox Sports pay-per-view.
Heavyweight contender Whyte sees the Ruiz-Arreola fight as being designed as a vehicle to make the chubby Ruiz Jr look good by matching him against an old and deteriorated fighter.
Ruiz Jr has made it clear that he wants a trilogy fight with Anthony Joshua, and the only way he can get that opportunity is by winning and looking good. Choosing the 40-year-old Arreola as his opponent will tick both boxes for Ruiz, giving the chance to not only win but look good in doing so.
It’s believed that Ruiz won’t take any risky opponents as he slowly works his way towards a trilogy match against Joshua. Ruiz Jr will make millions in the third fight with Joshua.
Ruiz in a showcase fight
“It’s a fight that’s going to make (former IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr) look good,” said Dillian Whyte to Sky Sports about Andy’s May 1st fight against Arreola.
Ideally, the boxing public would prefer to see Ruiz take challenging opposition to EARN a third fight with AJ rather than backing into it by facing fodder opposition. Still, it doesn’t appear that Andy will do that.
Some argue that Ruiz is counting on using his popularity as the main attraction to get a third fight with Joshua. Ruiz is popular in the U.S, and he and his management may feel that he doesn’t need to take any risks for him to be given a third and maybe even a fourth fight with Joshua.
It’s a questionable move on Ruiz and his promoter’s part to put the fight against the over-the-hill Arreola on pay-per-view, given this is not a massive fight involving Andy taking on a top contender.
Arreola is coming off a two-year layoff and a loss to Adam Kownacki. It’s not as if his career is going smoothly, which is why boxing fans are complaining about the Ruiz-Arreola match-up being peddled on PPV.
Whyte views the Ruiz Jr vs. Arreola contest as a “Garbage” fight, largely because Arreola has been on the downward decline in his career since 2010, and he’s not the same guy that fought for a world title in 2009 against champion Vitali Klitschko.
Whyte: Ruiz being matched strategically
With the help of new trainer Eddy Reynoso, Ruiz Jr (33-2, 22 KOs) has lost 30 lbs, trimming down to 255 lbs for his first fight in almost two years since losing his IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight belts to Anthony Joshua in their rematch in December 2019.
Ruiz will be facing the former two-time heavyweight world title challenger Chris ‘The Nightmare’ Arreola (38-6-1, 33 KOs) on May 1st at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California.
“Make him look like, ‘Oh yeah, he’s this, and he’s that,’ but on paper, it’s not,” said Whyte about the purpose behind Ruiz fighting Arreola. “Chris Arreola has been shot for a few years. If he were fighting Chris Arreola a few years ago, people would be like, ‘No, that’s a garbage fight.’ Now it’s the same, if not worse.”
“It’s a good strategic move from his team, him coming back, and he’ll bash Arreola. ‘Andy Ruiz, yeah he’s back, and he’s motivated, and he looked so good,'” said Whyte.
There was never any chance that Ruiz would be put in with a risky opponent for his first fight back from a two-year layoff. With the time out of the ring, huge weight loss, and the defeat to Joshua, it makes sense that Ruiz is being matched against an old lion like Arreola.
You have to worry if Ruiz continues to be matched against the weaker heavyweight competition on pay-per-view after the Arreola contest. Boxing fans don’t want to be asked to pay to see fighters like Ruiz face non-champions on pay-per-view.
Where to watch Andy Ruiz vs Chris Arreola
Boxing fans can see Ruiz vs. Arreola on Fox Sports pay-per-view on May 1st. The start time for the Ruiz-Arreola event is at 9:00 p.m ET.
View this post on Instagram