One potential date for the Deontay Wilder vs Andy Ruiz Jr. WBC heavyweight title eliminator is no longer secured by Premier Boxing Champions.
World Boxing News reported last month that Wilder vs Ruiz Jr. is on the cards for Las Vegas in the first half of 2023.
Both men had a WBC mandatory eliminator sanction reiterated at the WBC Convention for a 2023 clash. The bout will ultimately decide who faces the heavyweight champion and the winner of Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk.
WBN stated that Wilder vs Ruiz Jr. could happen on Cinco de Mayo weekend, but only if Canelo Alvarez gets ruled out of his regular spot.
Canelo is nursing an injury that makes it touch and go whether he’d be ready for a spring return. The Mexican superstar also believes his body needs rest following a relentless run of stellar opposition.
This scenario means Wilder vs Ruiz could take the coveted date of May 6 if Canelo passes on his usual right of passage.
However, March 18 – which was taken by PBC as a possibility, is no longer penciled in on the Nevada combat calendar.
Ruiz’s father, Andy Sr., recently confirmed that his son is considering holding his next fight in May. Therefore, waiting until the first weekend of that month makes sense if Canelo remains on the sidelines.
“There is one more fight left [with Al Haymon]. They have not told me who we will fight with,” Sr. told IZQUIERDAZO.
“It can also be with the other Cuban, with Frank Sanchez. But we will see who they want to put him with [next time].
“What is pretty much a given is that Andy will be back in action around the spring. If not Wilder, they’re ready to fight anyone,” concluded Ruiz Sr.
When and where will Deontay Wilder fight Andy Ruiz Jr?
However, Ruiz fought in September, defeating Luis Ortiz. Wilder scored a knockout in 177 seconds on October 15 against Helenius so that they can consider other dates.
Wilder recently knocked Robert Helenius out in the first round of their bout at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
He blasted the Finn out with a sensational right hand taking his record to 43 wins and 42 KOs.
The Tuscaloosa native could be fresh by February after a short break.
Right now, Premier Boxing Champions has begun securing dates. They held several slots at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on the famous strip.
March 18 was reportedly the ideal scenario for either Wilder vs Ruiz or David Benavidez vs Caleb Plant.
It seems Wilder vs Ruiz remains up in the air until Canelo clarifies whether he wants to return earlier.
WBN reported that New York and Los Angeles, the two favored venues for Wilder and Ruiz of late, are not being considered by PBC to give neutral ground for the battle.
Fury or Usyk
The winner of the clash will get the next obliged shot at the WBC title, with Fury vs Usyk likely for around the same time in Saudi Arabia.
Joe Joyce, the number one for the WBO belt, will likely get the first opportunity. This outcome would leave Deontay Wilder or Andy Ruiz treading water until early 2024.
Either could consider facing Anthony Joshua if the Briton gets back in the win column in the coming months.
Joshua beat Ruiz via unanimous decision in their December 2019 rematch. Ruiz had knocked AJ out in the previous June, scoring brutal knockdowns.
Whichever opponent lies in their futures will be decided after they collide in the final of a mini WBC title tournament sanctioned by Mauricio Sulaiman at the request of Al Haymon.
“The Gypsy King” or Usyk will await two of the best heavyweights on the planet outside the world championship picture.