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Interview

Quiet man speaks

Team Ruiz

Former world titlist John Ruiz spoke to reporters today at a media workout in advance of his WBA heavyweight title challenge against reigning world champion David Haye on Saturday in Manchester, England.

John Ruiz quotes from questions asked at today’s media workout in Manchester.

Regarding Haye’s win vs. Nicolai Valuev: “I was surprised he (David Haye) got a decision in Germany. Luck was on his side. I congratulate him. He did what he had to do and got the win.”

On Haye’s popularity in the US: “It’s still in the beginning. His name is spreading around. He needs to face somebody who’s been in the heavyweight division and that’s me. He still isn’t well known in the United States.”

On comparing Haye to Evander Holyfield:
“Holyfield’s a legend. I can’t compare them today. Every fight is difficult because everybody comes to win. That’s what makes boxing special.”

On changes since he’s had Miguel Diaz as his head trainer, also criticisms: “We’re still here and hopefully this time around we’ll get a win. You’re seeing more of the Ruiz from the past — boxing and punching, not holding. How many guys can say they’ve fought and won the two world heavyweight championships.”

On winning the third world title with a victory against Haye and being mentioned with Muhammad Ali and Evander Holyfield: “It is going to work this time. No matter what they say, they can’t take it away from me.”

On Haye’s talking: “He can talk all he wants but he knows he’s in a tough fight.”

On an American winning the world heavyweight title: “I was born in the United States and my family is Puerto Rican. I’m a Puerto Rican-American. I’ve accomplished a lot during my career. I am the first Hispanic world heavyweight champion, but I’m an American and I’m bringing the belt back home.”

On watching tapes of Haye: “I don’t focus on the other fighter, I focus on myself. He’s going to prepare himself and use the style he believes will win the fight.”

On his experience: “Experience plays an important part but so does youth. We’ll see what comes out on top. I have a new team — trainers Miguel Diaz and Richie Sandoval, and a new promoter, Golden Boy — but there are still some people who’ve been part of the team for a long time. I’m at peace, blessed with my family, and I’ve never been in tune with boxing like this during my career.”

On fighting in England: “I’ve fought here six times (6-0). These fans put favoritism behind them and root for a good fight. I’ve fought everybody in the world, never avoiding anybody, and I’m very proud of that. I’ve traveled the world and boxing has been a savior for me.”




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