By Sean Jones: Deontay Wilder and Andy Ruiz Jr will potentially be fighting in May on pay-per-view, possibly in the U.S. or Middle East.
What could make things difficult for the Wilder vs. Ruiz fight to take place in May is that the match between IBF/WBA/WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr and Keith Thurman is happening in that month.
According to Mike Coppinger of ESPN, PBC won’t want to schedule two pay-per-view events in the same month in May. The winner of the Ruiz-Wilder fight will be mandatory for WBC champion Tyson Fury.
The former IBF, WBA & WBO heavyweight champion Ruiz (35-2, 22 KOs) has won his last two fights since losing his belts to Anthony Joshua in December 2019.
Ruiz’s activity, or lack thereof, since losing to Joshua has been disappointing. Also, what has been troubling is Ruiz’s choice of opponents, opting to fight older heavyweights rather than younger ones that might beat him again.
Ruiz’s last two fights:
- Luis Ortiz – 43 years old
- Chris Arreola – 41
Former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder (43-2-1, 42 KOs) defeated Robert Helenius by a first round knockout on October 15th in New York, winning his first fight in three years since his seventh round knockout victory over Luis Ortiz in November 2019.
“All indications are Deontay Wilder, and Andy Ruiz are going to fight. The WBC ordered that fight as a final eliminator for the title held by Tyson Fury, and I expect it to happen, and again, they’re looking for a site,” said Mike Coppinger to Max on Boxing.
“I’ve heard the Middle East, but I’ve heard Al Haymon handles both guys, so that’ll be a surprise,” Coppinger continued bout the plans for a Wilder – Ruiz match. “I think it’ll end up in the U.S. The last I heard, they were going to go in May, but now I’ve heard Spence & Thurman are going to go in May.
“You can’t do two pay-per-views, of course, in the same month. So I’m not sure where that’s headed, but that’s a fight that I expect for sure,” said Coppinger about the Wilder vs. Ruiz fight.
“This is one of the great eras for heavyweight boxing. It appears, at least, that we are in the middle stages of a legitimately great heavyweight era,” said Max Kellerman.
“There haven’t been that many of them in the 70s and the 90s. You could argue one or two others. Throughout boxing history where you have a bunch of good fighters in their primes getting together.
“It’s not just the Fury and Wilder trilogy or four or five, we’ll get to that, but it’s those underneath. Those fights that support. When Joshua fought Ruiz for the first time, that was a great fight. That was a terrific fight.
“The idea of Wilder & Ruiz, those are the type of supporting fights when the top contenders, the colorful contenders with punching power and skills, where you know Wilder’s punching power gives him the edge.
“Ruiz is such a skillful guy, has quick hands, and throws combinations; the outcome is not predetermined. We don’t know; let’s see what happens. Those are the kinds of fights that makes eras special. I’m glad we’re getting this one, and I hope it comes off,” said Kellerman.