Joshua v Ruiz 2: Big Fight Betting Preview

Joshua v Ruiz II - Big Fight Betting Preview

Former world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua will bid for revenge when he locks horns with Andy Ruiz Jr. in Saudi Arabia on Saturday night. The Brit held the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO belts when he first tangled with Ruiz at Madison Square Garden in June. He was the overwhelming favourite to wipe the floor with his unheralded opponent, but Joshua ended up suffering a seventh round knockout and surrendering his belts. That was the first loss of his career and much soul-searching ensued, but he insists he is now ready to make amends for that stunning defeat.

Joshua v Ruiz: An Unlikely Rivalry

Olympic champion Joshua was the superstar of the heavyweight division after dethroning Wladimir Klitschko, overwhelming Joseph Parker and surging to a 22-0 professional record. Yet he had only ever fought on British soil and he was keen to make his US debut. Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller was selected as the ideal opponent for the Madison Square Garden showdown, but the bout was plunged into jeopardy when he failed two drugs tests.

Joshua’s promoters needed to find a replacement quickly, and they turned to Ruiz. He did not exactly look the part, as he appeared positively out of shape when standing next to the hulking, chiselled frame of Joshua. His record was not to be trifled with – he was 32-1, with the only defeat of his career coming via a mixed decision when he fought Parker – but he was seen as mere cannon fodder for a boxer of Joshua’s ability. Indeed, Joshua began talking about who he would fight next once he brushed aside Ruiz. He was accused of disrespect, but insisted he was only being realistic.

Yet Joshua should not have taken the threat Ruiz posed so lightly. The Mexican-American’s dazzled with quick hands and ruthless counterpunching that left his opponent’s defence brutally exposed. He dropped Joshua twice in the third round and twice more in the seventh before the fight was called off. At the time, Ruiz was leading on two scorecards. It was regarded as one of the biggest upsets in boxing history, up there with Buster Douglas beating Mike Tyson and Hasim Rahman knocking out Lennox Lewis.

All Roads Lead to a Rematch

Joshua’s team included a rematch clause in the fight contract without ever think they would actually need to invoke it. Yet they quickly set about planning a rematch in the aftermath of his shocking defeat. Joshua was keen for the fight to take place in Cardiff, but Ruiz laughed off that suggestion and urged the Brit to return to North America. In the end they both compromised and they will fight in Saudi Arabia on Saturday instead.

Since then Joshua has set about reinventing himself, seeking to rediscover a passion for the sport and overcome the issues that saw him falter last time out. This week he declared that there is fire in his belly once more. His camp has suggested that his recent sparring sessions are the most impressive he has ever delivered, while he should benefit from partnering with Elvis Garcia, who offers some stylistic similarities to Ruiz.

For his part, the new world champion has been loving life. He has been walking around with a huge grin on his face and lapping up the attention bestowed upon him. Yet he insists that this will not be five minutes of fame, as he has promised to make history by beating Joshua again on Saturday. “The only thing that he can do is just run around – he’s not good at boxing,” said Ruiz when discussing his opponent’s apparent limitations. “I know his flaws. I can do a lot better. The rematch is going to be the same. I am going to be more prepared and more ready.”

Fighters Give Their Verdicts

The outcome of Saturday’s fight will determine Joshua’s legacy as a boxer. If he wins he will be back in business, but defeat would leave his career in tatters and make a huge difference to the manner in which he is remembered. Yet many of the biggest names in boxing have tipped him to struggle in this fight. Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder, the other two big names in the heavyweight division, have both gone for a Ruiz victory on Saturday. Fury called the Mexican “a fat little pig”, but predicted he will knock Joshua out, while Wilder also went for Ruiz.

Kubrat Pulev, the division’s number one contender, said that unless he is lazy in camp, Ruiz will secure a second victory against Joshua. British promoter Frank Warren also predicts the same outcome when the two men meet once again in the ring. “You can only look at what you see last time, and Ruiz took AJ’s best shot and got off the floor and took the fight to him,” he said. “I don’t see much of a different outcome this time around.” Yet others, including Carl Frampton and Kevin Barry, are going for Joshua.

Joshua v Ruiz II Betting Odds & Spreads

Joshua was the massive favourite to topple Ruiz when these men met in New York earlier this year. The odds are closer this time around, but the Brit remains odds-on to regain his crown. The Joshua v Ruiz odds show that the Brit is priced at 2/5 to win this fight, whereas Ruiz is out at 2/1. You can find 5/6 on Joshua to win via a knockout in the boxing betting, or 15/4 on him winning on points. If you fancy Ruiz, he is 11/4 to knock Joshua out once more or 9/1 to win on points. You can find round betting and round group betting too.

The boxing spreads tell a similar story. Joshua’s 100 Win Index is 66-72, while Ruiz’s is 28-34. It is a lot closer than the first fight, but Joshua is still seen as the clear favourite. Joshua has an 8-11 supremacy index over his opponent, and you can find 16-22 on him winning on points or 49-55 on him winning via a knockout. If you cannot decide who will win, you might like to check out the Total Rounds betting, which is pitched at 7.5-8, or you can look at Total Minutes at 22-23.

Get ready for Saturday evening’s huge bout with Sporting Index’s industry leading boxing spreads and boxing odds.

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