Andy Ruiz Jr, Heavyweight champion of the World!

Huge upset in boxing last night - HW champion Anthony Joshua got turned over by a 11-1 underdog Andy Ruiz, 7th round TKO. Ruiz took the fight on 5 weeks notice when Joshua’s original opponent dropped out with a failed drugs test.

Joshua was the consensus pick as the best HW fighter around, but he had his detractors (who are in full voice today) - very musclebound fighter who is prone to gassing out, not the best movement and questions over his chin. These flaws were front and centre last night, Ruiz got sat down himself in the third but came back and walloped AJ from pillar to post, put him down four times before the ref called it off in the seventh.
Absolute nadir performance from AJ - can’t believe how bad he looked tbh. RUiz landed one of those shots to the temple in the third that don’t look especially big, but just scramble the senses. Put AJ on queer st and he never really got over it.

Anyhow, all the talk will be Joshua this, Joshua that, but hail to the Champ (apparently the first Mexican HW champ in history) - Ruiz fought the fight of his life, showed huge heart to get up from a knockdown, and battered the overwhelming favourite. He also showed that boxing ain’t a bodybuilding competition, as fair to say there was a dramatic contrast in physiques. Apparently they will rematch in the Autumn.

As just a casual spectator who enjoys boxing but doesn’t watch it all that much, I gotta say it gives me some joy when the ostensibly more out of shape, shorter (relatively) guy wins against the tall, chiseled, more athletic Adonis type of boxer.

Joshua was the consensus pick for best heavyweight by promoters who were cashing in big on him. Everyone else saw him as a good fighter, well trained, but lacking significant experience. His only meaningful fight was against a 40 year old Wladimir Klitschko. He didn’t do well in that fight until Klitschko tired late in the fight.

I didn’t know much about Ruiz but I could see in round 1 that Joshua was in danger. Ruiz went down first, but it was obvious that he wasn’t hurt, and that he got up more determined than before. With each or Ruiz’s subsequent punches it was obvious that Joshua was in trouble. Joshua has been bragging ‘bigly’ of late, Ruiz shut his mount last night.

Congratulations Andy. Unfortunately for all of us there will be a rematch instead of Ruiz taking on Deontay Wilder to clear up who the real heavyweight champ is. Anyone paying attention just might think it’s the guy with a 42-0-1 and 40 KOs record.

Last night showed that Ruiz was not at all out of shape in terms of conditioning. You just mean he was fat.

I watched the highlights and holy cow, Ruiz just destroyed Anthony Joshua. I noticed that Joshua kept dropping his head in as he punched tho, allowing Ruiz easy reach. And Joshua’d physically lower his upper body to be at the same head height as his opponent (so his punches were going straight in instead of down at an angle), which also put his face in easy reach of the shorter Ruiz.

I’m shocked to find out that Ruiz beat Joshua last night. Why did Joshua lose? Was he not prepared, since Ruiz was a replacement for Miller, is Ruiz a bad style match-up for him, or is Joshua just not as good as advertised?

Watch the highlights I linked to… Joshua kept allowing his face into Ruiz’s reach and Ruiz, once he saw that the could hit Joshua in the face AND he could rock him easily, became ferocious.

Probably all three of those things. What is worrying for AJ is that he can’t say he just walked into a massive shot, as even the best chins can be folded at heavyweight level. It looked more like an attritional series of knockdowns where he was visibly wilting - both chin and heart massively in question after that.

I think Joshua might have a weak chin. He was dropped by an old Wlad, rocked by Whyte, and dropped and stopped by Ruiz.

I thought that was a classy and proper quote from the loser of the contest.

But Ruiz had a couple of good ones too:


Ruiz went right after Joshua’s body. That’s why he was coming in head down, trying to extend his reach on the shorter man while keeping his body back. Just another sign of his lack of experience. He was also looking to throw bombs at Ruiz instead of using a real jab, that allowed Ruiz to move forward with impunity.

And yeah, the evidence is that Joshua’s chin is suspect.

The highlights I saw began with Joshua knocking Ruiz down and it seemed from his reaction that he was confident and trying to use the left to measure Ruiz and then throw the straight right, which caught Ruiz. The problem was that Joshua closed in on Ruiz, which also gave Ruiz his best chance of winning. Joshua closed in, but instead of finishing off Ruiz, he found out Ruiz wasn’t that badly hurt and he got a taste of the big boy’s power. I don’t think Joshua expected Ruiz to fight back, and that’s the difference between the competition that he faced and crushed in the UK and the kinds of fighters he’s going to be facing from here on out. The top echelon fighters are tough guys who can bang. They’re not going to just fold and become target practice for Joshua.

I don’t think it was a terrible loss for Joshua, and quite possibly a good learning experience provided he has the mental toughness to put it behind him. Joshua has the physical tools to beat anybody. It’s just a question of how he deals with this loss psychologically, and how he deals with getting hit and hurt again in future fights. If there’s one bad thing that I saw in the fight it’s that Joshua looked like he got fatigued pretty early. A good head shot will do that but I was surprised by how gassed he looked in the 3rd round

Ruiz’s bombs also came from some unusual angles.

I was actually wondering about this. Ruiz had so much fat it literally rippled whenever he moved quickly. But he didn’t seem to tire as the fight went on - to the contrary, it was the chiseled Joshua who lost it. So it looks like underneath the fat Ruiz probably was in good shape in terms of muscle, lung & heart capacity etc. He just happened to have a big layer of fat on top of it.

Question then is: in such a situation, does the fat have positive qualities to it along with the negative?

It has an obvious downside in that he would be dragging around extra weight which is not adding punching power or stamina. But on the other hand, I wonder if it served as “padding”, which mitigated the impact of punches received to the body, which a guy with only muscle might not have.

BOOM right in the ear. I watched some older fights where Ruiz rocked his opponents with the same punch.

Extra weight does add some power to punches unless a fighter is just arm punching. Power comes from the rigidity of the entire body down to the balls of a fighter’s feet, and the weight adds some momentum. But generally it’s been detrimental to boxers because as you say, the rest of the time it’s useless weight he has to drag around the ring.

I wonder about the padding effect, it could help to distribute the force of body punches. And some glancing body punches may not hit more than fat. It may also be indicative of a body type where he actually has much more muscle than someone like Joshua and the fat is disguising that.

Turns out the upset was Drake’s fault.

From the clips, I liked Ruiz’ ferocity when AJ was vulnerable. Quick recognition and a flurry of accurate and hard punches. Punches in bunches.

Another horizontal British champion.

Loved seeing the highlights and this result! In high school and college, I dabbled in boxing, culminating in my still-undefeated 1-0 amateur heavyweight record (it was really, really amateur…). And I looked a lot like Ruiz in body type and general fighting style.

As a side note, I have extremely mixed feelings about boxing in general due to the high likelihood (much higher even than American football, in my understanding) of traumatic brain injuries. It’s a great sport – maybe the all time great sport, in terms of the physical and mental demands of the competitors… not sure if any other sport demands the same combination of strength, stamina, power, agility, speed, toughness, and willpower. But I don’t think most of these guys really understand the damage they’re doing to their brain. Riddick Bowe is the ultimate cautionary tale, and stories like his are why I’ll never box again nor allow my (future) kids to box.