Monday, May 29, 2023  |


Ruben Villa is ready to make Enrique Vivas look silly on ShoBox Friday night

Ruben Villa IV. Photo credit: Emily Harney
Fighters Network

Ruben Villa is playfully conniving. You see, the undefeated 22-year-old southpaw is very serious when he gets in the ring with anyone, whether it’s sparring or just hitting the pads and working on angles. He’s also very intelligent. He believes in himself. All elite fighters should.

In fact, Villa is so full of confidence that his superior skills get taken over by the instinct of making his opponent look like a fool. That’s going to his goal Friday night (10:30PM ET/PT) when Villa (16-0, 5 knockouts) appears in the co-feature on Showtime’s ShoBox: The New Generation against 25-year-old Enrique Vivas (17-0, 9 KOs) from the La Hacienda Event Center, in Midland, Texas.

“I want to frustrate (Vivas) and make him look silly to the point where I’m dominating him,” Villa said. “If I start putting pressure on him and walk him down, I’ll do that. The first part of the fight, I’ll working on boxing him and breaking him down. Embarrassing my opponents has always been a part of my game.

“I love breaking an opponent down, so when you have an aggressive fighter in front of you, it helped me and adds more points to what I do and my skill level. What I’m going to next, hopefully by the middle of next year, I’ll get a title shot. That starts with dominating this kind of fighter and showing everyone what I can do.”

Villa said he developed the mentality to make his foes swing at air when he roughly 14 or 15, coming up through the amateur ranks. It was around the time he his skills were becoming more defined. With improvement and increased knowledge in fighting assorted styles and different approaches, Villa started to become more grounded in what he could do defensively to make foes miss.

“I would fight this aggressive, awkward Mexican veterans who were really trying to take my young head off that I started to sharpen what my skills. But it really didn’t sink in that I could make guys look silly until early in my pro career. That came with playing it smart and looking to outbox who I faced.

“You do need a certain amount of confidence to do it, but all world champions have to have that. It’s not being cocky. It’s who I am. I’ll make my career longer. I don’t mind being cute, but I also don’t mind being hit. I can take a punch. But what I do with my style, it’s just a matter of knowing what I can do. I know, especially against (Vivas).”

Villa is an inch taller than the 5-foot-5 Vivas. Villa also knows Vivas will come right at him.

“He’s a real aggressive, Mexican-style fighter and he has his way,” Villa said. “This is a good step-up fight for me. I’m ready. I would say he’s probably the toughest I’ll face as a pro. But I am confident. I’ve had a great training camp. I’m ready to make this guy look like a fool.”

It’s nothing new for Villa.



Latest Issue Cover