Team Wilder assess the Anthony Wilder-Andy Ruiz Jr rematch, provide prediction

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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The trainer and manager of WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder 42-1 (41) has cast his eye of this weekend’s heavyweight clash between Andy Ruiz Jr 33-1 (22) and Anthony Joshua 22-1 (21).

Jay Deas says he’s excited to see the immediate rematch of the June bout that saw Ruiz Jr wrest the IBF, WBA and WBO titles from Joshua by seventh-round knockout at New York’s famed Madison Square Garden.

“There’s a lot of people out there now wondering what this fight has done for Joshua, but there’s other ways to look at things,” said Deas to Sky Sports.

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“It’s going to be interesting to see what Joshua will be like because he knows deep down that he’s no longer invincible and that he can be hurt at any time.

“He took one big shot and didn’t recover, and he’ll have that playing in his head over and over again. He can’t approach this fight with the same recklessness and aggression he’s showed before, but is fighting cautiously the answer for someone who’s not used to fighting that way?

“As for Ruiz Jr, it’ll also be interesting to see how things play out for him because the last six months will have been absolute chaos for him. He’s a very wealthy man now, he’ll have friends coming out from everywhere telling him how great he is.

“Ruiz Jr will think he’s the greatest man on Earth with all of the attention he’ll have received these last few months and you wonder how he’ll react to that. Is his hunger still there? Does he still want it? Has he already peaked?”

Pressed to pick a winner, Deas said he had to go with the guy who got the job gone so emphatically the first time around.

“I’ve got to go with Ruiz Jr again. That first fight took a lot more from Joshua in my opinion and it was a slow beating that got worse as it went on,” he said.

“Ruiz Jr took a few rounds to figure Joshua out and he’s the fighter who also survived a crisis in the fight.

“Joshua didn’t survive his crisis so what happens when he faces another one?

“This is heavyweight boxing at its best, but if I’m picking winner then I have to go with the guy who performed so well in the first fight.”

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