Paulie Malignaggi warns AJ ahead of rematch

0
128

Paulie Malignaggi has warned Anthony Joshua we have not seen the best version of Andy Ruiz Jr yet, but believes the former unified heavyweight champion will exact revenge.

The former two-weight world champion was in attendance at Madison Square Garden to watch Ruiz pull off one of the biggest shocks in recent heavyweight history.

Anthony Joshua was stopped by Andy Ruiz Jr in New York back in June

Anthony Joshua was stopped by Andy Ruiz Jr in New York back in June

Dropped to the canvas on four separate occasions, Joshua was stopped in the seventh round to relinquish his heavyweight titles.

An immediate rematch was sanctioned, with fans flocking to Saudi Arabia this Saturday to see if ‘AJ’ can right the wrongs of that horrible night in New York and reclaim his belts.

Malignaggi believes that, although the rematch will be a close affair, he expects to see the Brit emerge victorious in Diriyah.

“I see it a better fight than the first fight,” he told talkSPORT.com. “I see Joshua winning the fight.

Malignaggi was speaking at the Ultimate Boxxer VI press conference

GETTY IMAGES – GETTY
4
Malignaggi was speaking at the Ultimate Boxxer VI press conference

“I think it’s a fight where they’ll both push each other, they should bring the best out of each other and I don’t think Ruiz will have to make any adjustments to the first time.

“He just kind of went through him and that was it and I don’t think Joshua ever got started, you know?

“So I think Joshua will get started, I think Ruiz will be forced to make adjustments and I think they will bring the best out of each other and I edge it to Joshua.”

Despite being dropped for the first time in his career by a thumping left hand, Ruiz managed to recover his senses to land a left hand of his own which stunned the favourite.

Joshua spat out his mouthpiece before being beaten in New York six months ago

Joshua spat out his mouthpiece before being beaten in New York six months ago

Joshua was dropped twice in that round and managed to survive for just four more before referee Michael Griffin brought a halt to proceedings.

Because of the concussive nature of that third round punch, Ruiz was able to go on the offensive in the first fight and pressed forward with his hands high as his Mexican heritage dictates.

But Malignaggi warned Joshua that, although Ruiz was good the first time around, the 30-year-old has even more in his locker.

He added: “I think Ruiz had a good night, but I don’t think Ruiz had his best night either because he didn’t have to show us – the first shot he hit Joshua with ended the fight basically.

The Brit scored the first knockdown of the fight with a sensational left hook

The Brit scored the first knockdown of the fight with a sensational left hook

“Even if lasted another couple of rounds, there was nothing to show. Ruiz has more than what he showed on the night, I’ve seen Ruiz fight.

“Ruiz can fight, but he didn’t have to show any of it because once he hurt him, it was elementary at that point.

“And I don’t think Joshua ever got started, so I think Joshua will get started and I think Ruiz will get going and I think they will go back and forth with each other.

“But I think Joshua gets him.”