As Andy Ruiz Jr. continues to be the talk of the town (or really the whole boxing world) after upsetting Anthony Joshua last weekend to become unified heavyweight champion, the titleholder talks to Fight Hub TV about plans for the rematch, and why he’s going to demand huge money if Team Joshua wants to fight on their own home turf.
Check out some excerpts below...
Ruiz on what the last week has been like since becoming champion:
“You know what, it’s been a little crazy. You know, coming from New York over here, doing a lot of interviews, a lot of press, I haven’t gone to see my kids or my wife or nothing like that. But, you know, I’m really excited that I won the world heavyweight champion and I became history, so I’m excited for that.
On his life changing overnight:
“Yep, it sure did, and all the hard work and dedication I’ve been doing with Manny Robles and having all the right people around me, it’s not a one-job thing, you know? But I just thank God.”
On his trainer predicting that he would knock Joshua out:
“He had a dream, and my dad — a lot of people had dreams that I knocked him down and it’s crazy. And what do you know, I’m knocking him down.”
On what he was thinking during the first round of the fight, sizing Joshua up:
“I think from the first round to the third round I was just trying to get a feel from him, you know? Both of us was trying to see what we both got, you know? And it’s like a little warm-up thing because we still have 12 other rounds. But what do you know, he dropped me in the third round, my first time being on the canvas, I got up like a true warrior would and knocked him back down.”
On what his first thought was when he got dropped for the first time in his career:
“I was a little surprised. I was like ‘What the hell?’ a little shocked, you know, because I’ve never been down in the canvas, I don’t know how it felt. But it’s kinda like a little numb part where you’re on the floor, your eyes close, you wake up like ‘What the hell, I’m on the floor.’ But I felt good, I got up. I got up good, I took a breather and I was just thinking ‘Come on, God, give me power. Please, God!’ That’s what I was saying when I got knocked down and what do you know, Anthony comes at me trying to finish me off. I moved and got him with the left hook and ever since I got him with that left hook it hasn’t changed — he didn’t change.”
On if he knew Joshua didn’t want anymore after the last knockdown when Joshua went back to his corner and put his arms on the ropes:
“There’s nothing left. I think if the referee wouldn’t have stopped it, I think I would’ve knocked him out in a dramatic other way. But, you know, the ref does his job but I did my job, for sure.”
On how hard Joshua hits:
“Well he hits pretty hard if he put me on the canvas, you know?...I think it was a lucky shot of him putting me on the canvas, but those lucky shots could end the night. But the warrior that I am, the Mexican blood that I have inside of me made me get up and win the fight.”
On what’s the status of the rematch with Joshua:
“Yeah, I think they did say November/December but right now my team, they’re negotiating everything right now, you know, and I just gotta stay busy, stay healthy, and be ready for the rematch.”
On Team Joshua wanting the rematch in the U.K. and whether he has the power to shut that down and force the rematch here in the U.S.:
“I would love it to be here in the United States or in Mexico, you know. But, hey, it all depends on the team and what we negotiate. You know, if they want me to go over there they have to give me $50 million dollars. It they wanna come over there, you know — it’s just negotiations.”
On how he thinks a rematch would play out, and whether or not he thinks it would be the same kind of fight:
“We all have improvements to make and we always learn as boxers, we always have stuff to learn. And I think if we do the rematch he’s gonna be a little bit more cautious. I think he’s gonna try to box me around [the ring] but Anthony’s not good moving back, moving around.
“But if we both exchange punches I’m easily gonna — I have the faster hands and I can take a punch.”
On his thoughts on media pundits like Stephen A. Smith basically trashing his win based on his physical appearance:
“Everyone has their comments and their differences but no hard feelings to the people that are trying to talk down about the fight and whatnot. But shoutout to Steph, or whatever his name is.”
On if he thinks a fight against Deontay Wilder will ultimately be the fight for the undisputed championship:
“You know what? In this boxing game, especially the heavyweight game, you never know because it only takes one punch to change the whole fight and the situation...But who knows, I think it’s gonna be a really exciting fight against Wilder and Ortiz. To me, I think Wilder’s gonna win, you know? Ortiz is a little bit older but I’d love to get in there with Wilder as well. I think that’s the only belt that I’m missing and to be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world I need that belt.”