If Anthony Joshua defeats Andy Ruiz Jr. in their rematch, the former heavyweight champion won’t have any contractual obligation to grant Ruiz a rubber match.
If Joshua were to win their rematch December 7 in a competitive, entertaining fight, it would warrant a third bout. That doesn’t necessarily mean Joshua would give Ruiz a chance to avenge his loss following their immediate rematch in Diriyah, Saudi Arabia.
Joshua revealed during their recently completed three-day, three-city press tour that he’ll seek an “easy fight” next if he regains his IBF, IBO, WBA and WBO titles in three months.
When asked during an interview session with a group of reporters if he’d give Ruiz a rematch, Joshua replied, “No. I’m gonna fight some guy from the pub. That’s what the heavyweight division does, isn’t it? I said, ‘Why am I fighting all these solid contenders? I’m going to fight an easy fight after that.”
Joshua acknowledged that he was partially referring to the level of competition rival Tyson Fury has faced in his past two fights. Fury, who knocked untested German Tom Schwarz (25-1, 17 KOs) in the second round June 15 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, is set to box unknown Swedish southpaw Otto Wallin (20-0, 13 KOs, 1 NC) on Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Deontay Wilder, Joshua’s other heavyweight rival, has pursued a more difficult fight he’ll need to win to secure his spot in a rematch with Fury (28-0-1, 20 KOs), tentatively scheduled for February 22. Wilder (41-0-1, 40 KOs) will defend his WBC title versus Luis Ortiz (31-1, 26 KOs, 2 NC) in a rematch that’ll take place November 23 at MGM Grand Garden Arena.
If Joshua (22-1, 21 KOs) can win back his titles from Ruiz (33-1, 22 KOs), he says he’d eventually like to fight Wilder and/or Fury. Those wouldn’t be the types of fights he would pursue right after facing Ruiz a second time, though.
“That’s why when you ask me who I’m fighting next, I’m telling you, I’ll fight who I want,” Joshua said. “Don’t tell me about no Wilder or Fury. Take it how you want, but that’s what I see the heavyweight division’s about.”