By Tim Royner: Andy Ruiz Jr. says his team are currently talking with Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn to resolve the issues they have with the rematch with Anthony Joshua. Earlier this week, Hearn held a news conference to announce the Joshua-Ruiz 2 rematch on December 7 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
It’s a good sign that Ruiz’s team is speaking with Hearn, but it still doesn’t mean that the fight is a go. Until Ruiz’s team speak, fans will have to wait and see what transpires.
Ruiz Jr. (33-1, 22 KOs) and his team weren’t at the press conference, which immediately led to speculation that things were’t looking good for the rematch.
On Wednesday, Ruiz Jr. broke his silence in saying that he wants the rematch on his own terms, and that he wants it back in New York. Hearn immediately responded saying that Ruiz Jr. already signed the rematch clause for the second fight, and that he’s contractually bound. He further said that Ruiz would be facing legal action if he chooses not to take the fight.
Hearn says Ruiz Jr. signed contract for rematch before first Joshua fight
“The contract for the rematch was signed prior to the first fight,” Hearn said to skysports.com. “They are both signed at the same time. There is no other contract.
In the meantime, Joshua and former heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis have been going back and forth on social media in trading word. Joshua is calling Lewis, 53, a “clown”, because he’s been giving him advice on where to stage the fight with Ruiz, and telling boxing fans that he never worried about becoming the undisputed heavyweight champion during his own career.
Ruiz says team is working with Hearn on rematch details
— AndyRuizjr (@Andy_destroyer1) August 15, 2019
Joshua and Hearn want the rematch to happen with Ruiz, and they could be sorry they took the fight. It’s going to be a really tough fight for Joshua, because he couldn’t handle the combination punching from Ruiz last June. Ruiz knocked Joshua down four times before the match was halted in the seventh round.
“Undisputed wasn’t something I ‘worried’ about. It was something I went after until it was accomplished!” said Lewis to Sky Sports News in talking unifying the heavyweight division. “Disappointed in AJ’s words, but I understand that this ‘jealousy’ narrative was only fabricated AFTER I criticized them for Wilder negotiations. All of the sudden I’m a hater. 🤷🏾♂️ Ask who benefits from such a simple minded narrative? Not AJ. Not me,” said Lewis.
Lewis wasn’t as stressed out at accomplishing things just for the sake of record books. Joshua seems to be too goal oriented, and he’s not looking to improve as a fighter. He seems to be going after superficial accomplishments, as if it’ll validate him and his career.
Joshua calls Lennox Lewis a “clown” – again
“Always say it as it is… a clown is a clown. He can wipe his make-up off but his heart remains the same,” said Joshua.
Heavyweights Daniel Dubois and Ruiz Jr. came to the defense of Lewis with social media posts.
“Respect to Lennox Lewis,” said heavyweight prospect Daniel Dubois.
When asked who would win a fight between a prime Lewis and Joshua, Ruiz Jr. said this on his Twitter: “Lennox all day.”
There’s no question that Lewis was the better fighter than Joshua during his prime. There were no weaknesses in Lewis’s game. He had a good chin, power and stamina. His boxing skills were top notch as well.