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Best Shots: Andy Ruiz Jr bounces back from knockdown to defeat Chris Arreola by decision

Ruiz wins WBA heavyweight title eliminator

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Former unified heavyweight world champion Andy Ruiz Jr bounced back from an early knockdown to defeat all-action heavyweight Chris Arreola by unanimous decision. The pair squared off in the main event of a PBC boxing fight card live on pay-per-view from Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California on Saturday, May 1 (Sunday, May 2 in Australia)

Check out Ruiz vs Arreola fight video highlights here, while some of the best shots in photo report can be found below.

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Chris Arreola knocks Andy Ruiz Jr down in Round 2 | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions

“Chris is a veteran and a hard puncher,” said Ruiz. “We did what we had to do tonight. We got the victory that we wanted. I was at my lowest point and now I have to climb the ladder again. I’m thankful for the victory and I’m ready to move on to the next.”

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
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The battle between boxing’s two greatest Mexican-American heavyweights in Ruiz (34-2, 22 KOs) and Arreola (38-7-1, 33 KOs) began with fireworks, as the underdog Arreola landed a powerful overhand right that forced Ruiz to touch the canvas and earned Arreola an early knockdown on the cards. Ruiz was able to recover and survive the second round, taking the knockdown as a wake-up call and prompting him to initiate numerous big exchanges in the third round.

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions

“He got me with a good clean right hand in the second round,” said Ruiz. “I was too overconfident and dropped my hand a bit. Hats off to him. We just kept pushing and pushing. I switched up and started focusing on counterpunching and working the body.”

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions

Both men tasted power punches in a raucous third round that saw Arreola land 14 power punches to Ruiz’s 13, according to CompuBox. Ruiz adjusted as the fight went on, and found success scoring with body shots and combinations punctuated by a punishing sweeping left hook.

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
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Ruiz owned a 106 to 75 advantage in power punches landed and built up his lead on the cards by landing 161 of his 626 punches thrown, to Arreola’s 109 landed and 521 thrown. Arreola appeared to hurt his left arm in round eight, but was able to manage any pain enough to continue throwing bombs until the final bell.

Ruiz punctuated his performance with a strong final round, clinching his victory in the WBA Heavyweight Title Eliminator by the scores of 117-110 and 118-109 twice in the eyes of the judges.

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions

“I respect the judges, but I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” said Arreola. “He might have won, but don’t tell me I only won two or three rounds. I got hit in the shoulder and it kind of threw it off. It wasn’t a big deal though. It’s a part of boxing. I didn’t take too much punishment. I’m ready to run it back with Andy.”

Andy Ruiz Jr vs Chris Arreola
Chris Arreola post-fight | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions
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“I felt a little rust and I know other fighters can relate to that,” said Ruiz. “If he wants to run it back, we’ll run it back with him.”

Andy Ruiz Jr victorious
Andy Ruiz Jr victorious | Ryan Hafey / Premier Boxing Champions

The full fight results from Ruiz vs Arreola card can be found here.

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