Andy Ruiz Jr. sweeps Joell Godfrey on Saturday
Much has been reported on the recent weight loss of Andy Ruiz Jr.
However, in his first fight back in over nine months, Ruiz could show he could still fight.
Battling through some ring rust, Ruiz won a one-sided, eight-round decision over late replacement Joell Godfrey at the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore, Calif. on Saturday evening.
With the win, Ruiz improves to 25-0, 17 knockouts, while Godfrey drops to 17-15-1, 6 KOs.
Ruiz is a talented fighter but has been dogged in recent fights for weighing in as high as 273 pounds. His appearances in these fights have raised questions as to whether he fully commits to training.
Ruiz may or may not have heard these claims but he did come into the fight weighing in at 247 3/4 pounds, 20 pounds less than when he fought Siarhei Liakhovich on Dec. 20.
Godfrey took the fight late Thursday when the California State Athletic Commission did not license original opponent Devin Vargas. Godfrey had not fought since April 18, when he was stopped after the third round by John Wesley Nofire.
Ruiz was in control throughout the bout and pressed the action from the opening bell, working mostly behind a consistent jab.
As the bout progressed, Ruiz worked at a measured pace, doing more than enough to win the round and keep Godfrey on the defensive. Godfrey worked occasionally with his back off the ropes, throwing one punch at a time. Godfrey was in survival mode during the last three rounds of the fight, mostly evading Ruiz’s punches.
All three judges scored the bout 80-72 in favor of Ruiz, who is likely to return to action on Oct. 24, in support of the Terence Crawford-Dierry Jean fight in Omaha, Neb.
Valdivia stops Ramos
Junior middleweight Danny Valdivia shook off a knockdown to stop Jeremy Ramos in the sixth round.
Valdivia, who hails from nearby Tulare, goes to 9-0, 7 KOs, while Ramos drops to 9-2, 4 KOs.
Midway through the second round, Valdivia hurt Ramos with a right hand to the head, eventually dropping him with another right moments later. Valdivia went in for the kill but was hurt by a left hook upstairs from Ramos. Valdivia did not go down but his glove touched the canvas, convincing referee Zac Young to correctly rule it a knockdown.
Both fighters had their moments throughout the bout. Midway through the sixth round, Valdivia hurt Ramos with a right hand to the head. Valdivia followed up, landing a barrage of punches that dropped Ramos to the canvas. Young saw enough and waved the fight off at 1:40.
In non-televised action:
– Middleweight Esquiva Falcao dropped Zoltan Papp (7-2-1, 3 KOs) in the second round, forcing referee Marcos Rosales to stop the bout at 1:50. Falcao improves to 11-0, 8 KOs.
– Lightweight Andy Vences (13-0, 9 KOs) won by technical knockout in the first round when Andres Bustamante (6-7, 1 KO) was not able to continue due to a fractured right arm. Referee Marcos Rosales stopped the bout at 2:13.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper, Boxingscene.com, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing.