In a persistent attempt to secure a bout with former WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, Andy Ruiz Jr. (35-2, 22 KOs) has taken to social media with a noteworthy demand. However, Ruiz's insistence on a $10 million purse for the potential showdown with Wilder is raising eyebrows and sparking debate within the boxing community.
Ruiz's desire for a hefty payday comes amidst doubts about the genuine interest from fans in witnessing this matchup. Some observers speculate that Ruiz's financial windfall from his high-profile fights against Anthony Joshua has somewhat shifted his priorities. Instead of battling his way back to the top against formidable opponents in less lucrative matches, Ruiz appears to favor pursuing lucrative mega-fights.
Ruiz, who once enjoyed a surge in popularity following his stunning upset victory over Anthony Joshua in June 2019, has encountered challenges in maintaining his relevance. With only three fights since that milestone win, including a defeat to Anthony Joshua in their rematch and wins over Chris Arreola, and Luis Ortiz. Ruiz's lack of consistent activity and high-quality opposition has hampered his standing in the division.
While there was a fleeting period during which Wilder's team entertained the idea of facing Ruiz, the negotiations ultimately faltered due to Ruiz's considerable financial demands. Similar circumstances transpired in talks for a bout against WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. As a result, Wilder's focus has shifted towards a showdown with Anthony Joshua in Saudi Arabia early next year, sidelining Ruiz from those plans.
In his recent social media posts, Ruiz stood firm, asserting his willingness to fight Wilder for $10 million. He contended that the proposed compensation should align with his worth and the threat he poses. However, there's skepticism around the feasibility of such an arrangement, particularly if it mirrors Ruiz's purse from his most recent match against Luis Ortiz.
It remains a question mark whether Ruiz can reclaim his status in the heavyweight hierarchy. To do so, he may need to redirect his focus from the substantial earnings he reaped in his encounters with Joshua and dedicate himself to the challenging path of facing formidable contenders. While Ruiz's ambition is clear, time will tell whether he can translate it into a compelling comeback that restores his prominence in the boxing world.