The former unified boxing heavyweight champion, Andy Ruiz, is set to return for his first fight after losing his belts in a rematch with now-champion, Anthony Joshua. Ruiz takes in Chris Arreola on Fox Premier Boxing Championship on May 1st. The pay per view event will take place in Carson California. Ruiz and his team held a virtual workout on the PBC YouTube page and Ruiz and his trainer, Eddy Reynoso. Watch that full workout below.
Andy Ruiz, returning to form
As mentioned earlier, Andy Ruiz last fought Joshua, whom he took the belts from. That fight was in December of 2019. Ruiz has missed almost all of the pandemic era and is just happy to be back doing what he loves: boxing.
“It’s great to be back. I feel really good right now with all the hard work we’ve put in at the gym. I know Arreola is training hard as well and looking good, so we’re ready for whatever he brings on fight night.”
After the disaster of a performance against Anthony Joshua in the rematch, Ruiz set out to find some new inspiration. In that search, he landed with perhaps the best trainer in boxing right now: Eddy Reynoso. Sounds familiar? It should. Reynoso has trained fighters that you may have heard of: Ryan Garcia, Oscar Valdez, Canelo. With that stable of fighters, Ruiz feels like he’s fallen into the hands of the perfect coach for him.
“I chose Eddy because this is where the champions train. Everyone here is dedicated and disciplined. I felt like I needed to make this change and it’s really something that I should have done a long time ago.”
And Ruiz is already learning from his new team. Discipline is something all of Reynoso’s athletes have and Andy Ruiz is picking that up as well.
“The main thing I’ve learned here is discipline. That’s something you can’t buy, you have to do it on your own. You have to want it.”
Make no mistake about it, Andy Ruiz isn’t just learning discipline. Reynoso is also meticulously going through every punch, every step, every position, and is perfecting the techniques and mechanics of Ruiz.
“I’ve learned so much here. We try to perfect every punch and every movement. I’m not just a fighter who comes forward. I have more abilities. Losing weight is going to let me show more of what I can do.”
Ruiz and his opponent, Chris Arreola, are not alien to each other. In their earlier years, the two sparred with each other. Ruiz says it feels like destiny that the two should meet as professionals today.
“Chris and I sparred when I was 16-years-old. We’ve both had the same dreams and the same vision. We’ve had great careers. My dad has always said that me and him were going to fight one day and now it’s right around the corner.”
Ruiz has fallen back in love with boxing. At one point it became anchor for the former champion. But learning under Reynoso’s tutelage has really given him that love of the sport back again. Being a champion and finding his new team has really lit a fire under Ruiz.
“I come to the gym with a smile on my face now. I’m not where I want to be yet, but I’m a lot better than I was before. I just have to keep working and stay disciplined. I have to be in the gym, even when I don’t have a fight date. It’s got to be a lifestyle.”
As you’ve probably seen from the internet, Ruiz is looking much more slim these days. This is part of that new found discipline says Ruiz. He says that this change in lifestyle has made him a better boxer and he cannot wait to show off the new and improved Andy Ruiz.
“I’ve learned different abilities that I can do during this training camp. I can throw different punches and combinations fighting at this weight. I was always a fighter who could come forward, but now I can switch it up. I can’t wait to show it on May 1.”
Eddy Reynoso on the growth of Ruiz
The mastermind of Eddy Reynoso has a plan set for the former champion. He says first getting Ruiz and his mind right was the important part of recreating the fighter.
“The most important thing for Andy is the discipline and his mentality. Those are the main aspects we’ve been working on. From there, we have the building blocks to get better each and every day with everything we want to do.”
Reynoso can’t say enough good about Ruiz as well. Having the most important pillars of a fighter gives the trainer good tools to work with on the former champion.
“The talent and intelligence has always been there for Andy. It’s a pleasure to work with him. He’s done everything I’ve asked of him so far.”
Reynoso says this new Ruiz will be a treat for boxing fans. The new version of the former heavyweight champion is better than ever and Reynoso has all the faith in the world in his new talent.
“I’m really excited for this fight. You’re going to see a new Andy Ruiz Jr. both physically and mentally. You’re going to see him become champion again. I can’t wait for this step on May 1.”
Regardless, neither Andy Ruiz nor Eddy Reynoso are looking past Arreola. They know that this fight is going to be a barn burner and a great night of heavyweight boxing for fans.
“It’s definitely going to be a tough fight against Arreola. These are two fighters who had the same upbringing. There’s going to be nowhere to hide in the ring and they’re going to bring out the best in each other.”