Ex-world heavyweight champ Andy Ruiz Jr. walking into a “Nightmare”

Chris Arreola Heavyweight

Sean Michael Ham

All the talk over the past few weeks has been about the transformation of former heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr. A fact that will irk his forthcoming opponent.

Chris Arreola heads into his battle with Ruiz as a man knowing that one more career defeat could be his last. That’s dangerous.

Ruiz has a “Nightmare” on his hands in his first Pay Per View offering on United States soil.

Arreola is not ready to lie down just yet.

“I’m ready for this fight. I’ve been waiting for this fight for four or five months. This one is going to be a barnburner for sure,” said the California-based puncher.

“This fight is important for my legacy. I want to make the fans happy they bought this fight.

“I don’t fight for paychecks. I’m a fighter for the fans. So I hope they enjoy this fight and buy this pay-per-view.”

Both men are of Mexican descent, which makes for an entertaining bout. Arreola aims to lay it all on the line, no-hold-barred this weekend.

“I love what I do. I’m a fortunate person to have been a fighter since a young age. I bleed boxing,” he pointed out.

“I put my whole self out there every time I fight. But I know that I owe it to the fans to give them a great fight.”

On working with Joe Goossen, Arreola added: “Defensively I’ve grown so much working with Joe. He’s taught me a lot about keeping my hands up and countering.

“He hasn’t reinvented the wheel. He’s just made sure the wheel is round.”

Chris Arreola
Sean Michael Ham

His last bout was a 2019 defeat to Adam Kownacki. His former foe has since been humbled by Robert Helenius, making the result look worse for Arreola.

This scenario makes it all the more important for Arreola to put up a good show on Saturday night.

“I was able to keep up the pace against Kownacki because I did everything I had to do in the gym. I could have given three more rounds at the end of that fight too.

“The fight is always won in the gym, and we put all of the work in to win that fight. I thought I won that fight. Despite not getting the decision, it was a fun fight for me.

“I feel great. I’ve been working hard for months. I know that I have to make this a great fight for the fans and myself. I know how crucial this fight is for my career.”


Concluding on his tag as the outsider in this heavyweight fight, Arreola stated: “I ignore the odds. If people want to make me the underdog, I’m comfortable with that.

“I’ve been an underdog my whole life. I’ve had some long layoffs before, so I know how to get back into it when the time comes.

“The sparring helps you know where your timing is at, and that’s the best way to gauge where you’re at in your training camp.

“It’s a beautiful venue at Dignity Health Sports Park. There isn’t a bad seat in the house. Every time I go there, I love to sit up there with all the fans and enjoy the fights.

“It’s going to be a fun night of boxing on May 1, and I can’t wait.”