Andy Ruiz not ruling out facing Chris Arreola with April return
Boxing is the one sport where your biggest failure will fester in the pit of your stomach. Until you get a chance at redemption, months, sometimes years later, it can eat you alive unless you make the necessary changes and come back stronger.
Thus is the story for former unified heavyweight champion Andy “Destroyer” Ruiz Jr (33-2, 22ko) after turning the boxing world on its head by defeating then unified champion Anthony “AJ” Joshua (24-1, 22ko) in June 2019. Following that victory came the fame and fortune of being not only the champion, but the first-ever Mexican heavyweight champion.
Ruiz showed up everywhere. He was on all of the Mexican networks, social media, and endorsements. He even received an invitation from the President of Mexico. With all this fame came expectation, and sometimes it can be too much to live up to.
THE QUICK RISE AND EVEN QUICKER FALL
In December 2019, everything quickly came crashing down as Ruiz entered the rematch with AJ, and it became obvious at the weigh-in that he did not take this fight seriously. Joshua made easy work out of the Destroyer and was once again on top of the heavyweight division.
Fans were livid with the lack of discipline and training displayed by Ruiz and the attacks on social media were brutal. Even then WBC champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder jumped down his throat saying, “The fuck you mean you didn’t train hard!”
LOOKING TO RISE AGAIN
Following all the negative attacks, the Destroyer made immediate changes. First, the former champion owned up to the disappointing effort by apologizing to the fans for everything. In addition, Ruiz changed trainers from Manny Robles to Eddy Reynoso, the trainer of boxing’s biggest earner Canelo Alvarez.
These moves caused some in the boxing community to ease up a little bit. Moreover, since being out of the ring for fifteen months, the former champion looks and sounds better both mentally and physically.
During an interview with Constantino Garcia of Little Giant Boxing, the Destroyer spoke of the fans seeing a totally different fighter and did not rule out a possible showdown with former title contender Chris Arreola.
“Once they see me on April fight everything is going to change. Everyone is going to see the dramatic change of mine and from my team. It is exciting, I can’t wait to get in the ring. I am not saying who I am going to fight yet, but it is going to be an interesting fight.”
When asked if his return to the ring was still going to be against the rumored Arreola replied, “I don’t know, maybe.”
Ruiz is still a player in the division and is ranked highly by three of the governing bodies. It appears he has turned things around under the championship-building tutelage of Reynoso, and fans are eager to see the results.
By: Garrisson Bland