clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Andy Ruiz Jr: ‘Anthony Joshua is big and strong, but so is this little fat kid!’

Andy Ruiz Jr gets his crack at Anthony Joshua on June 1.

Danny Garcia v Adrian Granados - Weigh-in Photo by Yong Teck Lim/Getty Images

One man’s misfortune is another man’s jackpot now and again.

Jarrell Miller’s misstep means that Andy Ruiz Jr has been graced with the opportunity of his fighting lifetime. That means his purse — in the millions — and also the upside if he manages to make the oddsmakers look foolish. If the Cali boxer, formerly in the Top Rank stable, downs the unbeaten Brit Joshua, he can be set up for two lifetimes. Now most aren’t thinking the chubby pugilist, aged 29, can do the deed and better Joshua on the DAZN platform. He sounded ready to confound the doubters.

“The training camp is really good, so we’re ready,” he says. Ruiz told “Talkbox” listeners this week that he is dialed in and won’t be seeking to merely come for the payday on June 1 when he takes on Joshua at Madison Square Garden.

“There’s a lot of doubters, there’s a lot of haters out there. But I tell everybody, do not judge a book by its cover. I love that people underestimate me, because when I get in the ring I surprise them, I amaze them, so they’re like, ‘Whoa, man, look at this chubby kid go!’”

He said he is working on trimming down, getting the physique a bit more sleek.

“This is the most focused I’ve been in my whole professional career. There’s a lot of doubters out there, that just gives me the drive and the motivation to prove everybody wrong, especially all the Anthony Joshua fans. All my Latino fans, my Mexican fans, we’re here to claim what’s mine, and that’s the WBO world championship he has, and all the other belts. So tune in June 1st at Madison Square Garden, there’s gonna be a lot of action, a lot of fist-fighting, punching to the face, and all that for 12 rounds or less!”

He had me going, for sure.

Could he share some specifics, not the game plan, but how will he look to try and better AJ?

“Just staying focused and on the game plan,” he said, noting that he’s sharp after doing a 12-week camp and getting a W over Alexander Dimitrenko on April 20.

“Anthony Joshua hasn’t fought in nine months, so I think I have an advantage. He’s big, he’s strong, but so is this little fat kid!”

He said he can use AJ’s size against him, that he will want to be first but also counter. Basically, sounds like he wants to out-work the UK ace.

But some will think Ruiz (32-1, 21 KO) is too tubby to be a threat. He said he’s always liked to chow, and yep, he has a sweet tooth. He promises explosivity and sharp movement, though, and says his weight will be around what it was when he fought Joseph Parker in 2016 (255 pounds), and that he will be in fine physical condition.

The fighter, now under the Al Haymon umbrella, continued. Does he see holes in AJ’s game? Speed, counter punching and making Joshua back up will get him to the W, he said. “It’s going to be an extreme fight.”

The boxer said he does very much realize people pay good money to see him in action so he will want to give them bang for the buck.

And he doesn’t spend time on beefing with haters, and people who online call him a fatty. He said he saw the light a little while back, and comprehended that you can’t please all the people all the time. He uses the meanness as fuel, he told “Talkbox” listeners.

“I used to be on social media and I’d be like, ‘Get in the ring with me and this little fat boy is gonna teach you a lesson!’”

Now he works to try and turn around the doubters, turn haters into rooters.

Check out more of the interview if you like; I asked Ruiz about his fondness for Snickers bars, and hear when his Snickers habit started. (Starts 59:53)

Follow Woods on Twitter

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Bad Left Hook Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your global boxing news from Bad Left Hook