Joshua v Ruiz Jr. II: Andy Ruiz Jr.'s hand speed at open workout leaves fans concerned for AJ


We’re just days away from the highly-anticipated rematch between Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr. in Saudi Arabia.

The second instalment of Joshua v Ruiz Jr., taking place at the Diriyah Arena on Saturday, will pit Joshua against the man who took all of his heavyweight belts in that shock defeat back in June.

Did Joshua take Ruiz Jr. lightly? He lost by TKO in the seventh round and has undergone a physical transformation for the rematch.

AJ was visibly slimmer during his open workout on Tuesday, with his promoter Eddie Hearn telling the Guardian that he will weigh in more than half a stone lighter than he did for the first Ruiz Jr. fight.

“He’s not been pumping weights, he’s been watching his diet, eating really clean,” Hearn said.

Not that Ruiz Jr. is concerned. The Mexican is undeterred by Joshua’s new approach.

"I don't think it'll matter, I'll weigh the same I did on June 1," 'The Destroyer' told Sky Sports.

"I know AJ has been working on different technicals, he's slimmed down, so we've been working on different things and angles, different pressures and combos, ready for whatever he brings.”

Andy Ruiz Jr. v Anthony Joshua 2 (Clash on the Dunes) - Press Conference

Ruiz Jr. gave fans a glimpse of his skills during his public workout, where his rapid hands were on display.

The 30-year-old’s speed is deceptive, largely thanks to the weight he carries, but he carries such a threat that Joshua will know to be wary of.

According to BBC Sport, Joshua turned to watch Ruiz Jr.'s workout but the smile left his face when he saw the Mexican in action.

And some boxing fans are even fearing another defeat for AJ after watching Ruiz Jr. in training.

“Terrifying hand speed, I honest don’t see AJ winning,” one fan wrote.

Another added: “Joshua has never faced such a speed and this time it’s improved…”

Andy Ruiz Jr v Anthony Joshua 2 - Public Work Out

Another said: “AJ watching this right now goin 😳”.

Someone else wrote: “Fat man has hands that are slept on. That’s why he’s sleeping aj”.

And another boxing fan said: “He’s a heavyweight how is he moving so fast. 👊Ruiz for the win he is just too much of a pure bread boxer for AJ”.

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GIVEMESPORT's Scott Wilson says:

AJ should be wary of Ruiz Jr.'s speed but he will know to expect it and during his training camp, will have worked on ways to counter it.

It's the "different things and angles, different pressures and combos" that Ruiz Jr. speaks of that Joshua really needs to watch out for.

But Joshua will bring new moves himself which could prove key.

Ruiz Jr.'s hand speed is mightily impressive but it's not the sole reason to believe that the Mexican is going to defend his titles.

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