(CBS Local)– Southern California native Andy Ruiz Jr. returns to big stage of the boxing this weekend.
The Mexican American defeated Anthony Joshua in June to become the WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight champion of the world. Ruiz Jr. is the first boxer of Mexican descent to ever hold the heavyweight title belts. Director Deirdre Fenton and sports streaming service DAZN take a look back at one of the biggest upsets in boxing history in their new documentary “One Night: Joshua vs. Ruiz.”
The doc features interviews with Ruiz Jr., Joshua, Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Michael Strahan, and Sylvester Stallone, who is an executive producer on the project. Fenton got the opportunity to spend time with Ruiz Jr. before the fight and was fascinated by this whole epic sports story.
“It was really a lot of fun to piece this back together,” said Fenton in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “Ruiz is the classic underdog. He’s likable, he’s personable and has a great family around him. You really want to root for him. When I went down to Mexico to visit Ruiz in camp, his trainer told me that a couple months before this fight he was about to quit boxing. It’s this incredible underdog story to come back and he believed in himself and his trainer believed in him.”
The rematch between Ruiz Jr. and Joshua goes down on Saturday afternoon in Saudi Arabia. The former heavyweight champion Joshua has had several months to think about what went wrong in June.
“The most compelling thing about the rematch is the first fight,” said Fenton. “When you go back to the first fight, you go back to those moments that changed the narrative. It was [Jarrell] Miller not being able to fight and that third round punch from Ruiz. [Mike] Tyson really articulates it the best when he says Joshua takes that shot to the head and his body is working, but he can’t control it.”