Malik Scott says Andy Ruiz needs to be reminded of his current place in boxing.
The head trainer of former heavyweight titlist Deontay Wilder criticized the Mexican-American for failing to be realistic during their negotiations. The bone of contention centered predictably on money, with the Wilder camp contending that Ruiz was inflating his own value. Both Wilder and Ruiz are backed by Al Haymon of Premier Boxing Champions.
Ruiz was briefly champion when he knocked out Anthony Joshua in seven rounds in 2019 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. But Ruiz would lose his belts in the rematch six months later. Wilder lost his WBC title in 2020 to Tyson Fury—their second fight—by seventh-round stoppage and would lose again, via 11th-round TKO, in the third and final rematch held in October of 2021.
In a recent interview, Scott seemed to suggest that Wilder has moved on from Ruiz. Wilder has not fought since knocking out Robert Helenius in one round last October at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. He has been rumored to be in talks to fight Anthony Joshua possibly in January in Saudi Arabia.
“What happened was that Andy tried to out-price himself,” Scott told FightHubTV. “Same way he did with Fury, same way he’s done with other fighters that he wanted to fight. This time (with Wilder) he was dealing with someone that don’t have to fight him for money. So if you wanna play games he wants the same money that he was getting when he was a champion in a blink of an eye.
“You don’t get that same money: you’re a contender now. You don’t get that type of money. I don’t get mad at nobody for striving for higher revenue. It’s a tough sport. He did what he had to do as far as fighting for the gain of revenue for him and his family—it didn’t work and we’re onto bigger and better things.”
Ruiz, like Wilder, has not fought for nearly a year. His last fight was in September, when he won a unanimous decision over Luis Ortiz at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles.
Sean Nam is the author of Murder on Federal Street: Tyrone Everett, the Black Mafia, and the Last Golden Age of Philadelphia Boxing.