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Bob Arum Says Andy Ruiz Beat An “Impostor” Joshua and Thinks He’ll Do It Again

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OG promoter Bob Arum stirs that pot better than his rivals, day in-day out, and so this is a fight week for Tyson Fury, and that means that yep, the Brooklyn-born deal-maker ddidn’t disappoint.

The Vegas based fight game builder sat with IFL-TV’s Kugan Cassius, and he drew buzz when he commented on that June 1 effort by Andy Ruiz, who won the upset of the year, against Anthony Joshua.

Basically, Arum told Cassius that Joshua wasn’t right, that wasn’t the real AJ, and yes, you might want to remember that Ruiz used to be a Top Rank fighter.

Arum reminded Cassius that when they talked pre June 1, when in Belfast, he said that “Ruiz had very fast hands,” and moves well, as well. He called him a “good fighter” and “courageous,” but that he “had no punch.”

“He had no punch, no punch that had any real effect,” Arum said. “The Joshua that I saw on June first at Madison Square Garden was an impostor, it wasn’t Joshua. It was somebody else,” he declared.

Before and during the fight, “that was not Anthony Joshua.”

No, “I don’t want to take anything away from Andy Ruiz, but from the way I look at it, he didn’t beat Joshua,” Arum said, “He beat somebody else, I can’t lie about that…That wasn’t Joshua!”

Cassius tried to get Arum to back off, and c’mon, let’s follow AJ’s lead, and not offer excuses, right Bob?

Nope; “Because we’re not fools,” the 87 year old said. “We know what we see, and I think he’s being very sporting, because nobody put a gun to his head June first. But the guy in the ring was not Joshua, it was not Joshua, it was a different fighter….You can sugar coat it any way you want, but I’m telling you, Andy Ruiz is not competitive with Joshua.” In a rematch, what happens? “The stupidest thing they can do is to put Joshua back in with Andy Ruiz…based on what I know about the sport, you’re gonna get the same result.” This wasn’t as Rahman-Lewis, he said, “this was different. This is a guy that guy got knocked down four times by Andy Ruiz, who hasn’t the ability to knock down ham ‘n egg guys.”

Eddie Hearn should let AJ get some wins, “there’s no hurry,” and let him get that confidence back. “I think that Andy Ruiz beats him when the fight goes on again, it looks like at the end of the year,” he said, noting that Hearn isn’t likely to listen to him.

My three cents: Arum says what he wants, when he wants, how he wants…all the time. And while people are up in arms over this interview, hey, this is Bob being Bob. He will not indulge you and give you niceties if he doesn’t feel like it. He hates political correctness, if it is substituted for candor…

Now, Bob’s candor is often or maybe almost always inter-linked with his push to promote. So, yes, you should note that a certain number of people have now become aware of the Saturday in Las Vegas Tyson Fury versus Tom Schwarz bout…

…because Arum stirred that pot to IFL. Does he really believe that AJ wasn’t right, that he came to the MSG ring “off?” I believe he does. And did he know what his assessment of Ruiz’ assets, including a lack of A grade power–something, by the way, I spoke of before the fight and which has me thinking harder about Arum’s take–would result in? He damn well did…because he’s the best boxing promoter this world has ever known. (Click that link to hear undiluted Arum on the Everlast “Talbox” podcast.)

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About Michael Woods

Editor/publisher Michael Woods became addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the fearsome Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist Woods has covered the sport since then, for ESPN The Magazine, ESPN.com, ESPN New York, RING, and he was editor of TheSweetScience.com from 2007-2015. Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and numerous other organizations.

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