Andy Ruiz Jr. Defends His Title Belts Against Anthony Joshua in Their Rematch
By Cameron Buford, whatsgoodinsports.com
A couple of weeks ago at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, site of the WBC Heavyweight Championship, the most recent Undisputed Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis share his thoughts, with a select few boxing writers, on the upcoming Championship rematch between Andy Ruiz Jr and Anthony Johnson. This long-awaited rematch has posed many questions for boxing fans around the globe, can Ruiz duplicate his surprising knockdown of previously undefeated Anthony Joshua. Or has Anthony Joshua learned something in that June upset which would allow him to avenge his previous loss?
Since becoming the WBA, WBO and IBF Champion Andy Ruiz Jr. has no doubt enjoyed the fruits of his labor. As the first Mexican American Heavyweight Champion Ruiz Jr. has been the toast of the town everywhere, he’s gone. From local southern California restaurants to jewelry stores and car dealerships Ruiz Jr. has been celebrated and applauded for being the first Mexican American to win the Heavyweight Championship title.
In an interview conducted months, he and I discussed what winning the heavyweight title would mean to him and his family.
In this training camp Ruiz has appeared to slim down some and his former trainer Freddie Roach has been on record saying, “when he loses the weight he’s not as good.” Though this is what fans would be looking to see in this coming fight. Former Champion Lennox Lewis says, “He (Ruiz) hits like a mother ******!”
In our sit down with Lennox Lewis, the two-time lineal champion gave the analogy of boxers learning how to beat Floyd Mayweather Jr. said, “they realize ‘I need to cut off the ring because he moves so well.’ Then they go back and they practice for three months how to cut off the ring; it doesn’t help them; they need to be practicing that for years.” “Unless you are a great fighter, then you can do that. But great fighters are difficult, because they’re caught in their same thing (routine).” “Back to the saying old dog new tricks,” Lewis expounds.
I then followed up to ask Lewis about the possible changes that Anthony Joshua could make in this rematch and what would make the biggest difference, “he can get better at his craft. He can look at the tape and say when I get hurt, I need to hold him properly.” According to the 3 Time Heavyweight Champion Lennox Lewis. When asked if he thought Joshua is a skilled enough fighter to make the proper adjustments in this rematch Lewis responded by saying, “I think he’s young enough to be able to learn.”
“He’s got a heavy task ahead of him,” Lewis continues to say. “I don’t think he should’ve done an immediate rematch; especially how he lost! I think his promoter should’ve brought that fight to England, where his family, where his crowd is.” Lewis also stated, “as a World Champion you need to box around the world!”
Whether Joshua is trying to fill the shoes of fellow World Champion British fighter Lennox Lewis, Lewis emphatically states that “he shouldn’t be trying to fill my shoes. He should be trying to fill his shoes. I think that part of the problem as well; listen I’ve done my thing. I set my goals for others to try to surpass.”
If this fight weren’t in Saudi Arabia, I’d certainly be at this fight! Both men are coming into this fight with something to prove. Joshua wants to prove that losing his belts was a fluke and that he is, in fact, the real Heavyweight Champion. Andy Ruiz Jr. wants to prove that their last fight was not a fluke and that he deserves to be recognized as the true WBA, WBO and IBF Champion. These are legitimate questions that boxing fans and I will be looking to have answered on December 7th. What is your prediction for this title fight?
In this fight, I would expect Ruiz Jr. to overwhelm Joshua with his series of combinations as he did in their previous fight. Like the ole saying, ‘styles make fights.’ This fight is an excellent example of that as I do not think Joshua will be able to compete with the array of punches Andy Ruiz would be coming with throughout the night.
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