By: Sean Crose
Former heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz will be facing the popular and longtime heavyweight contender Chris Arreola on May 1’st at Carson, California’s Dignity Health Sports Park. The bout was originally set for April. Although this promises to be an intriguing and most likely entertaining affair, the fact the Premiere Boxing Champions’ event will appear on pay per view for roughly fifty bucks is raising some eyebrows. Neither fighter has had a major victory in quite some time. What’s more, neither has an enormous fan base or a world title to defend. Still, the appeal of two talented big men going toe to toe was enough for the PBC to decide to take the fight down the PPV route.
Ruiz shocked the world back in 2019 when he used his fast hands, power, and toughness to defeat heavyweight titlist Anthony Joshua in the Englishman’s American debut at Madison Square Garden. A rematch around half a year later in Saudi Arabia showed the world a far different Ruiz – fat, outmatched, and seemingly undedicated to his craft. Needless to say, Joshua outboxed his foe in the rematch and easily enabled himself to return to England with his titles back in his possession.
As for Arreola, the outspoken vet has always been entertaining. For this is a world class tough guy. He’s fought for heavyweight titles numerous times, and – now in his forties – most likely doesn’t see why he can’t get one more good crack a major belt with a win over Ruiz. And, truth be told, Arreola is the kind of person who is hard to entirely write off due to the fact that he has incredible heart. The man always seems to be one good shot away from a Rocky story. A happy ending against Ruiz likely won’t end up being the case, but there’s even less of a chance that Arreola will ever bore anyone.
So there’s good reason for fans to look forward to this fight. We’re it on Fox, or even Showtime, there’s every reason to believe fans would be eager to tune in. By placing a price tag on the bout, however, the prospect of PBC bringing in a large viewership is a small one. This is a wild time for the heavyweight division, however. With Deontay Wilder no where to be found and Tyson Fury and Joshua still trying to get a two fight deal together, there’s no telling how things will look in the near future – aside from the fact that the winner of Ruiz-Arreola will certainly be on people’s minds.
And that’s never a bad thing for a fighter.