Former heavyweight world champion Andy Ruiz Jr. to fight against Chris Arreola in his first bout since 2019.
Credit: Premier Boxing Champions
Andy Ruiz Jr.(33-2, 22 KOs) is set to fight Chris Arreola(38-6-1, 33KOs) on May 1 at the Dignity Health Sports Park in California. The fight, which is only a few days before Cinco de Mayo, will feature the two most prominent Mexican heavyweights. While this fight is clearly meant to be a tune-up for Ruiz, it is important to not discount the aged Arreola, especially not after Ruiz reminded the world that there can always be a surprise outcome.
Ruiz went on to make boxing in June of 2019. He was drawn as a replacement to fight Anthony Joshua for a title fight in New York's Madison Square Garden. His status as a replacement led to many discounting him as simply another notch in AJ's belt. This was far from how the fight would pan out. Ruiz ended up taking the lead, and he was able to floor the WBO, WBA, IBF, and IBO champion a staggering four times. The Brit was unable to continue after a barrage in the seventh round, and so the Mexican 25-1 underdog became the first Mexican heavyweight champion.
The fight then led to a rematch in December of that year. The rematch didn't go so well for Ruiz. He arrived almost 20lbs heavier than the first fight, and it was clear that he lacked the laser focus which won him the initial bout. He was outboxed and wholly outperformed by AJ, who won the fight with a clear unanimous decision.
"I can't wait to get back in the ring on May 1," Ruiz said in a press release. "Training with coach Eddy in his gym has been amazing. I'm around great fighters like Canelo Alvarez, and we're putting in the work so that I can look better than ever.
Since then, Ruiz has moved away from the spotlight and has focused heavily on training. He has come under the wing of veteran trainer Eddy Reynoso who is responsible for training some of the biggest names in the sport, like Ryan Garcia and Saul' Canelo' Alvarez, who is considered by many to be the greatest active boxer. Needless to say, Ruiz is probably in the best place possible to mount a comeback in the heavyweight division.
"In the time that I've been working with him, I have realized that he is a boy who wants to continue to overcome.
"He is young and wants to get ahead. He has already tasted the honeys of victory; he already knows what it is to be a champion and not be a champion. Andy Ruiz is intelligent, and he is going to return."
The packed card is scheduled to begin at 9 p.m. ET, with the ring walk to be expected around midnight. The fight is provided by FOX, and it will set viewers back $49.99.