A recentrevealed that Anthony Joshua will attempt to avenge his stunning upset loss to Andy Ruiz Jr. on Dec. 7 in a yet-to-be-constructed outdoor arena in Saudi Arabia. His shocking knockout of Joshua resonated with more than just boxing fans, but sports fans as a whole. This was largely due to the visual differences between the soft body of Ruiz and the prototypical muscular frame of Joshua, not to mention oddsmakers having Ruiz as large as a 25-1 underdog.
Ruiz, however, is not sold on the idea of the bout taking place in Saudi Arabia. Despite Hearn’s announcement and a press conference detailing the plans for the event to be held in Saudi Arabia, Ruiz told fans during an Instagram chat he had no plans to fight in the Middle East and wants to bring the rematch back to the United States.
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“AJ got the rematch, yes we do got the rematch,” Ruiz said. “But it’s gonna be on my terms. We’re gonna bring it back here in the United States.”
When contacted by Sky Sports, Hearn reiterated the terms of the fight. As laid out before the first meeting, any rematch would take place at a location of Hearn and Joshua’s choosing.
“The contract for the rematch was signed prior to the first fight,” Hearn said. “They are both signed at the same time. There is no other contract. We have to let [Ruiz Jr] know the time, date and venue which we have done. That’s it.”
Ruiz is at a disadvantage here given the existing contract, and he already made it clear he was not interested in defending the belt on Joshua’s “home turf” in the U.K. Refusing to go along with Hearn’s plans for the fight to take place in Saudi Arabia would almost certainly result in Ruiz losing his championships — and a whole lot of money.
More boxing news, rumors
- Hearn seems to be making a grab at an even bigger fight to non-boxing fans as The Athletic’s Lance Pugmire reports that Matchroom will promote the Logan Paul vs. KSI rematch on Nov. 9 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. The first clash between the YouTubers drew a sold-out crowd of 22,000 and generated more than 1 million pay-per-view buys.
- The Matchroom news continues with the signing of Billy Joe Saunders, who is the latest man to throw his name into the Canelo Alvarez sweepstakes. With potential fights on the horizon with Canelo or Gennady Golovkin on DAZN, Saunders has big game on the brain. “I’m on Golovkin and Canelo’s turf,” Saunders said. “I’ve made this move to make them fights because I’m sick of hearing their bulls–t excuses.”
- Tyson Fury was on ESPN “First Take” this morning claiming he will knock out Deontay Wilder in a rematch while stating that he learned there is no “fair playing field” the first time around when the two battled to a controversial draw. Fury is currently set to face Otto Wallin on Sept. 14.