With the December 7th heavyweight title rematch between Andy Ruiz and Anthony Joshua all good to go, Top Rank promoter Bob Arum already has one of his fighters waiting in the wings to take on the winner.
Arum says that Kubrat Pulev has a May 2020 deadline as to when he must be given a mandatory title shot at the IBF title currently held by Ruiz, and Arum fully intends to ensure his fighter gets that opportunity.
“If Joshua was to win (against Ruiz on December 7) then yeah, he has some titles. But then he has an obligation to fight another one of my fighters who is waiting patiently is Pulev,” Arum exclusively told World Boxing News.
“(If Andy Ruiz wins, after) They gave him special permission to do the rematch with Joshua. They said he must fight Pulev next no later than May.”
Then, when asked about his expectations for the Ruiz-Joshua rematch, Arum says he fully expects Ruiz to repeat his feat from this past June. And if that indeed happens, Arum thinks it’ll spell the end for Joshua.
“If Anthony Joshua loses again to Andy Ruiz, which I expect he will, who really wants to bother with him anymore?”
There are a number of pretty intriguing story lines leading into this Ruiz-Joshua rematch, but admittedly a future fight Kubrat Pulev isn’t really one of them. Pulev, 38, is most recently coming off a stoppage win over Bogdan Dinu in March, but hasn’t faced a top-flight opponent since getting stopped by Wladimir Klitschko in late 2014.