Ruiz was celebrating and living it up following his victory over Joshua in 2019, where he claimed the WBA, WBO, IBO, & IBF heavyweight championships via TKO in round seven.
The two had an immediate rematch, where Joshua took back his titles via unanimous decision later that year, a fight Ruiz came in over 15 lbs heavier than he did for their first.
Ruiz has gone on record and stated what may have been the issue leading up to his last bout:
“What a lot of people don’t understand is that I’ve been waiting for this moment my whole life. And once that moment happened, you know, I kind of went a little off the road, you know?
“I started doing things that I thought I would never be able to do. I wasn’t really focused (on the Joshua rematch). But now, like I said, I was really devastated.
“I do not wanna go back. I do not wanna do the same mistakes I did before. And like I said, I’m more motivated than I ever been before. I have God on my side and Eddy right here, so we’re ready for whatever comes my way.
“Losing my last fight against Anthony Joshua, it was devastating, you know?
“Because I did not do the things that I was supposed to do. And I look back right now, and I’m like, ‘Damn, man, if I would’ve stayed dedicated, if I would’ve stayed disciplined and do the right things that I was supposed to do.’
“And that was the most important fight of my life, [in] the rematch against Anthony Joshua. But now, it’s totally different. Now I got my mind right. You know, I got a great trainer. So, we’re just ready for May 1st. But like I said, of course I was really disappointed because I knew the ability that I had to stay champion.”
There were rumors of Ruiz facing former 11-time WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder next, but it looks like his team has settled on a bout opposing Chris Arreola first, which goes down May 1, 2021.
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