Andy Ruiz Jr. shocked the boxing world on June 1. He was a massive 11-1 underdog coming into his fight with British superstar Anthony Joshua, and most analysts believed that Joshua would make short work of the challenger. Ruiz proved to be more than anyone expected, though, rebounding from being knocked down in the third round to knock down Joshua four times on his way to winning the unified heavyweight title.
It was the best fight of 2019 so far, and a rematch was essentially guaranteed. The two heavyweights will meet in what is being labeled as the “Clash On The Dunes” Saturday afternoon in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia. The action will start with the undercard fights getting underway at noon ET, while the main event is slated to begin at 3:45 p.m. ET.
The WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO titles will be on the line, and the bout will be exclusively shown on DAZN in the United States and Canada.
Andy Ruiz Jr. vs. Anthony Joshua 2 odds
Although Ruiz won the first fight, he is still an underdog on Saturday afternoon, according to the latest boxing betting odds. Joshua is a -205 favorite in a bout that is not expected to go the distance. The odds on the fight lasting all 12 rounds are +250, and the over/under for the number of rounds we will see has been set at 7.5.
Can Andy Ruiz Jr. pull off the upset again?
Ruiz has been overlooked throughout his professional career. Even with a record of 28-0, he was unable to get marquee prize fights, and it appeared that he would never get his moment in the sun after a loss by majority decision to Joseph Parker for the WBO heavyweight title in December 2016.
He took over a year off before entering the ring again, but he came back with a fury. Ruiz knocked out Devin Vargas in the first round in March 2018, and he proved he had the stamina to go the distance in a win by unanimous decision over Kevin Johnson four months later. An impressive win over Alexander Dimitrenko set up the first fight between Ruiz and Joshua, and Ruiz took full advantage of the opportunity.
Ruiz comes into the rematch with a record of 33-1. He has knocked out his opponent in 22 of those fights, showcasing his raw power, but his quickness is his real calling card. Ruiz catches opponents off guard with how fast his hands and feet move, leading to some improbable knockouts.
Anthony Joshua is out to reclaim his belts
Joshua was heralded as the best heavyweight fighter in the world prior to his loss to Ruiz. The 6-6 boxer is the prototype of a heavyweight champion, and he seemed set to rule the division for a decade prior to his stunning defeat.
The former gold medalist is 22-1 in his professional career, and 21 of his victories have come by knockout. Joshua’s dominance as an amateur led to him being placed on the fast track to greatness, and he won his first major belt back in April 2016 when he defeated Charles Martin by knockout in the second round to claim the IBF strap.
His most impressive victory to date came the following year when he dropped Wladimir Klitschko to unify the heavyweight division. Joshua added the WBA and IBO heavyweight belts to his waist by beating Klitschko in a thriller at Wembley Stadium, and he acquired the WBO title in 2018 when he beat Parker by unanimous decision. He went on to defend his four titles successfully only once before his loss to Ruiz.
This is the deepest we have seen the heavyweight division in years, and the winner of this bout will likely be involved in the class’ biggest fight in 2020. If Ruiz can beat Joshua again, he will likely face the winner of the Deontay Wilder-Tyson Fury rematch in February, in what could be a full unification title fight.
A Joshua victory could lead to a long-awaited bout with either Wilder or Fury, or he could decide to make it a trilogy and take on Ruiz for a third and final time next year. A win would make him the most marketable boxer in the division, giving him the opportunity to make any fight he wanted.