Andy Ruiz Jr and Joseph Parker have points to prove in heavyweight double-header

Whilst Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury are grinding out an agreement, the heavyweight contenders are circling.

This weekend sees Andy Ruiz against Chris Arreola and Joseph Parker taking on Dereck Chisora.

I have no doubt Ruiz will light up the night in Carson, California. Parker must follow suit in London if he is to stay relevant at this level.

There is little demand for heavyweights reluctant to trade leather. This game is about knockout power and Parker does not show nearly enough of that.

The same cannot be said of Ruiz. Neither he nor Arreola are body beautiful but both can really fight.

Arreola, 40, needed this kind of rivalry ten years ago. Ruiz, 31, is the young lion in this pairing, and three stones lighter than he was in his last fight against Joshua in December 2019.

Andy Ruiz Jr returns 16 months after his defeat by Anthony Joshua

After his spectacular performance in dethroning Joshua in their first fight, there was not the same commitment in the second. Fame went to his head.

He is now working with Eddy Reynoso, who trains Saul Alvarez and Ryan Garcia. The old Ruiz has been laid to rest he said.

He is never going to look like Joshua. He doesn’t have to, as he showed in that first meeting.

It is not that former trainer Manny Robles did a bad job. He didn’t. But something had to change.

There is no fuss with Canelo, the biggest name in boxing, and young kids like Garcia. They are just serious about being in best shape possible.

It’s all about the graft in the gym and the right attitude.

Ruiz loves to fight at pace. He’s a brilliant combination puncher, so dangerous at three-quarter to middle range.

Arreola has an exceptional chin. Only Vitali Klitschko, Bermane Stiverne and Deontay Wilder have stopped him.

In terms of style Ruiz is a carbon copy, but better. Arreola will find out just how old he is in this fight.

It’s a pay day for him and he will bring it for as long as it lasts.

With Joshua and Fury seemingly tied up, Wilder is the big target for Ruiz, and he has every chance if he stays in shape.

Parker needs to put on a show. To prove he has a second gear.

Heavyweight boxing is about excitement. Show me you can pulverise someone.

Parker is too insipid. He doesn’t produce the old equaliser.

It is a long way to come from New Zealand for a laboured points win against an old war horse like Chisora.

That would be a wasted journey for him.

Follow Barry on Twitter at @ClonesCyclone, @McGuigans_Gym and @CyclonePromo

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