Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Ruben Villa: I Feel Like My Time is Kicking in Right Now

By Thomas Gerbasi

As the story goes, Ruben Villa got a trip to the boxing gym with his father for his fifth birthday. No bike, no toys?

“I guess not,” Villa laughs. “I guess I was too hyper for all that.”

Fifteen years later, it’s safe to say that boxing may have been the greatest gift the soon to be 21-year-old has ever received. It’s kept him out of the trouble most kids get into, garnered him acclaim for a stellar amateur career, and on Saturday, he will fight for his first pro title when he meets Marlon Olea for the WBO youth featherweight belt in his hometown of Salinas.

ruben-villa_3

Sure, he admits there were ups and downs over the years, but he stayed the course, which in itself is pretty remarkable given his long stay in the hardest game.

“I was raised into it, so I always just believed in it and all the hard work I was putting in,” Villa said. “I always believed that boxing was chosen for me and it was what I was meant to do. Eventually, I matured and realized that this is what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, and I’ve been pretty successful so far, so I keep working.”

Winner of several amateur titles, including the National Golden Gloves and Junior Olympics, Villa also split four bouts with 2016 Olympian and current unbeaten pro Shakur Stevenson, but just came up short of getting his own trip to Rio. In his eyes, there was no question that he was going pro.

“Nah, I was done with the amateurs,” he said. “I’m not that patient. I felt like my boxing style is more professional, and I wasn’t into waiting again, so it was time to start my professional career as quick as I could.”

By July of 2016, Villa had turned pro with a first-round knockout of Gerardo Molina, and he hasn’t slowed down yet, with two more fights in 2016, six in 2017 and one thus far this year. What a concept, fighters fighting.

“That was the plan, to stay busy and keep going as much as I can until I get that next big shot,” said Villa, who credits his father for leading him down the right path. “I can honestly say my dad, the way he brought me up, he always taught me to work hard and eventually my time will come. Everyone has their time, and I feel like mine is starting to kick in right now. But I’ve always been patient about it and I’ve been positive throughout everything.”

And positive things are coming back at him. But he’s not getting ahead of himself.

“It’s just the way I was brought up,” Villa said. “My parents taught me to be humble and just believe in what I was doing. So I separated myself from all the attention and didn’t let things get to me. I just stayed focused on what I had to do with whoever was in front of me.”

So he’s not letting the title of that YouTube video made when he was an amateur, “Boxing’s next Oscar De La Hoya,” get to his head?
 
“I’m just trying to be the best I can be,” he laughs.

He’s on his way. Just look at his thoughts on fighting at home for the first time as a pro:

“To everyone else it’s a big deal, but all the fights are important. In this one, I just feel like I have to be a little bit more focused and try not to let my emotions get to me since I’m fighting in my hometown. If I do that, everything should go as planned on Saturday night.”

Tags: Ruben Villa image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Scardina-Kekalainen Tops Matchroom Italy Card on March 8 DiBella: After Commey Beats Chaniev, We Want Lomachenko Fury: Wilder's The One Who Has To Redeem Himself, Not Me! Khan: The Offers for Crawford and Brook Were Literally The Same Frank Warren To Wait Out Warrington vs. Galahad Purse Bid Charr Wins Appeal, Reinstated As WBA Titlist; Box-Off To Follow Miles Shinkwin Back In March, Defends English Title Frank Warren: Joshua Made Massive Mistake in Snubbing Wilder Canelo-Jacobs: NSAC To Review Venue Request at 1/29 Hearing Eubank Jr. Very Pleased With Camp Ahead of Degale Clash Caleb Plant: I'm The Big Dog at 168, They've Got To Come See Me Hearn: Wilder, His Handlers Don't Have Decency To Answer Back Chris Algieri Confident He Can Raise His Level Against Hooker Kovalev Asks Fans 'Not To Make Hasty Conclusions On Situation' Cano in Line For a Big Fight, Linares Heading Back To 135 Curtis Stevens Heading To 154: Eyes Hurd, Lara, Harrison, Munguia Pulev vs. Helenius Clash Still Be Worked Out For Crawford-Khan Broner: I'll Be Back; All You Motherf***ers Will Still Tune In! Manny Pacquiao vs. Adrien Broner: CompuBox By The Numbers Gvozdyk To Take Voluntary Before Mandatory Versus Browne Pacquiao To Have Scratched Cornea Re-Examined Monday In L.A. Andrade: I Want Golovkin Next, To Prove I'm #1 at Middleweight Hearn: Don't Be Surprised if Joshua is on DAZN in the US in June Broner: Ain’t Got Mark On Me; They Thought They’d F*** Me Up Pacquiao: I Was Surprised Broner Didn't Throw Lot Of Punches Manny Pacquiao-Adrien Broner: Afterthoughts Broner Falls Very Short on Promised 'New Beginning' For Career Luis Coria Win Big in First Garcia Brothers Promoted Card Badou Jack Gets Stitched Up, Has No Excuses Over Loss Manny Pacquiao Says Injury To His Left Eye is Not Serious Manny Pacquiao Dishes Out Adrien Broner's Comeuppance Pacquiao's LA Home is Burglarized a Day After Broner Win Claressa Shields: Anybody Who Thinks Broner Won is Crazy! Video: Shawn Porter Reacts To Pacquiao Defeating Broner Video: Buboy Reacts To Pacquiao Defeating Adrien Broner Video: Mayweather Sr. Throws Shade at Adrien Broner For Loss Pacquiao: We Can't Blame Broner For Thinking He Won Fight Former Champ Gamache Assaulted on Street By Mystery Man Video: Roy Jones Jr. Reacts To Pacquiao Defeating Broner Video: Devin Haney Reacts To Pacquiao Defeating Broner
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement