In this media scrum caught by Fight Hub TV, Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn recounts what happened during Anthony Joshua’s failed title defense against Andy Ruiz Jr. Check out some excerpts of what he had to say below...
Hearn on what went wrong for Joshua:
“In the third round, when [Joshua] hit him with that combination — which was, by the way, an unbelievable combination — I thought ‘Over, not even close. He’s gonna step in, he’s gonna back him up, it’s all over.’ And nine times out of ten, it might’ve been...’cause [Joshua’s] one of the best finishers out there.
“But he got caught with a shot — and the difference with Ruiz is there’s not many heavyweights, there’s not many fighters who would do what he did in that situation, which was ‘ok, we’re gonna have a swing-up here. If I’m gonna get knocked clean out, I’m gonna go out swinging.’ A lot would have just backed up on the ropes [and covered up]. And that was actually AJ’s problem in the seventh round, ‘cause he started trading up again. And that’s why he got stopped.
“I think he thought to himself ‘I ain’t got much in the tank, yeah, so I need to have a go’, so he stood his ground, started trading up, got caught again, and that was the end.”
On some thinking that Joshua could’ve continued in the fight:
“I mean, I don’t think he knew where he was. It’s very easy to say ‘oh, what is he doing?’ — he didn’t know where he was! You know, he spat his gum shield out on the floor to probably try to get a little bit more time, or just didn’t know where he was, went back — he’s trying to stand up! I mean he could hardly stand up so he was looking at the ref, he didn’t say ‘I don’t wanna continue.’ The ref said ‘are you okay?’ and he sort of [had a glassy look in his eyes]. The fight was done. So, again, I’d love to say it was an early stoppage...but he wasn’t trying to continue. He just really didn’t know where he was...”