A slimmed-down looking former IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr posted a photo of himself on social media going through his paces in working out on his own during the lockdown.
The transformation for Ruiz’s physique is pretty dramatic, as he looks considerably slimmer than the 283-pound fighter that lost in his rematch to Anthony Joshua last December in Saudi Arabia.
Ruiz (33-2, 22 KOs) wants to be one of the fighters that bounce back strong after live crowds are allowed back in for events. The 30-year-old Andy Jr hasn’t said whether he’d be open to fighting behind closed doors without a crowd present, but it might need to be willing to make that move.
Unless Ruiz Jr wants to wait until a vaccine for the virus, he’s going to need to consider returning without a live audience. The money won’t be the same obviously, but Ruiz Jr needs wins under his belt to get pushed up the rankings.
The third fight against Joshua is possible for Ruiz Jr, but not until he picks up two or three significant wins. Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn said he would be open to putting together a third fight with Ruiz, but only after he starts winning again.
Ruiz made a mistake recently by turning down a fight against Dillian Whyte, a fighter that is promoted by Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing stable. If Ruiz were to beat Whyte, he’d have ripped away from his WBC mandatory position, and it would be him that would be in the driver’s seat to face Tyson Fury in February of next year.
Ruiz made a lot of money from his two-fights against Joshua, and some fans question whether he has the motivation after making all that dough. But judging from how Ruiz’s physique is looking with him working out on his own, he seems sober. When Ruiz gets into training camp with new trainer Eddy Reynoso, he’ll drop more weight, and he could be a much different fighter.
I’d like to see Ruiz in the 245 to 250-pound range, fighting someone like Michael Hunter or Filip Hrgovic. Ruiz must face a heavyweight that will move a lot because Joshua will be using movement against him if they challenge a third time. If Ruiz hasn’t slimmed down enough to cut off the ring on Joshua, he’ll lose another unilateral decision to him.
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