The new year will be a time to reset for many folks. Many of us will make resolutions, set goals in order to help fashion a better version of ourselves for 2020.
Statistically, most resolutions won’t hold fast for more than two weeks.
So, that alterna-optimistic note aside, let’s stay on the subject of resolutions, and turn the convo into the context of a guy who may well be mulling a few.
Andy Ruiz Jr went from hero to — well, not zero, that would be too harsh an assessment, but experienced a whip-saw change in how he was perceived by most of the masses.
Expectations were low going into his June 1 tango with Anthony Joshua, and he wildly surpassed them. He struck a blow for the chubby lads, for the ages. And then the blowback. Ruiz partied too hearty, assumed he could again conjure the same level of magic without prepping as diligently. He got fat shamed, frankly, by persons who felt like he took his skills for granted and didn’t offer all that we fans can expect — his best effort in training, in reference to the scale, and on fight night.
Yes, Ruiz has choices to make, now. He can continue to coast, luxuriate in the funds derived from the two AJ fights, or he can seek to get back on the vocational track via old school-style grinding. It won’t be easy. He’ll have to compartmentalize and pretend he isn’t a multi-millionaire.
His trainer, Manny Robles, also felt the whip-saw effect. His stock shot high because of his affiliation with Ruiz, and it dipped when his guy stepped on the scale and the damn thing groaned.
Robles was beyond a good soldier, carrying water for Andy when I asked if that weight was in fact not that big a deal. “Muscle weighs more than fat,” was pretty much what Robles responded. Yeah, no. Fat is fat, and going from the 260s to the 280s on that frame spelled thumbs up for the Seamless delivery dudes in the area, but doom for Andy’s prospects to repeat his June jamboree.
So, we wonder, will Robles and Ruiz stick together? We saw a report which indicated that Manny hadn’t heard from Ruiz. Are they on the outs?
“Don’t believe everything you hear,” Robles told me.
“I spoke to him the day after the fight, he said he would work harder and be more committed next time. I spoke to Ruiz Sr on a couple of occasions,” the tutor continued.
“His dad is looking for a new fight date and opponent as well. Not only myself but also his dad are giving him the time and space to reflect and think about his career. It’s the holiday season and I’m sure he’s spending time with his kids and family.”
My three cents: I’d like to see this trainer/fighter team stick together. They got over the hump together, experienced the stumble together, let’s see if they can reconnect and recapture the good vibes once again.