Former Unified Heavyweight Champion Andy Ruiz Jr. and Top Contender Luis Ortiz Fight on September 4 During Labor Day Weekend on FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View From
Crypto. Los Angeles’ com Arena
On September 4, in a fight during Labor Day Weekend from the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, former unified heavyweight champion Andy “The Destroyer” Ruiz Jr. and top contender Luis “King Kong” Ortiz will square off in a much-anticipated 12-round WBC Heavyweight Title Eliminator.
At 10:00 p.m., the pay-per-view telecast will start. ET/7 p.m. PT and feature competitive bouts amongst a talented roster of up-and-coming and seasoned professionals. The 12-round WBC Lightweight Title Eliminator will feature hard-hitting Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz versus seasoned Mexican opponent Eduardo Ramrez as the co-main event.
Popular three-division champion Abner Mares will also make his long-awaited return to the ring in a 10-round super featherweight showdown against former title challenger Miguel Flores, and exciting rising star José Valenzuela will square off against former world champion Jezreel Corrales in the 10-round lightweight pay-per-view opener.
Tomorrow, June 23, at 10 a.m., TGB Promotions will begin selling tickets for the live event. PT and are available for purchase at AXS.com.
Up to 10 p.m., pre-sale tickets are currently available. AXS.com through PT using the following codes: BOXING or CRYPTO
“The fight fans in Los Angeles are in for an action-packed Labor Day Weekend as Southern California’s Mexican-American star Andy Ruiz Jr. returns in his toughest test since his title run, against the always dangerous Cuban southpaw Luis Ortiz on September 4,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. “This is a perfect clash for the electric atmosphere at Crypto.com Arena and is sure to deliver fireworks. The FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View main event will prove once again that high-stakes heavyweight action is a must-see event. Adding in a slew of intriguing undercard matchups and this will be a night that will keep fans glued to their seats from start to finish.”
When he was called in as a last-minute substitute to fight heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua in 2019, Ruiz (34-2, 22 KOs) surprised the boxing world. Ruiz defeated Joshua by knocking him out in the seventh round and winning the championships. The 32-year-old from Imperial, California lost his rematch with Joshua by unanimous decision, but he made his way back to the ring in May 2021. After recovering from an early knockdown, he defeated all-action challenger Chris Arreola in a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View fight by unanimous decision. Throughout his celebrated amateur career, which began with two Mexican Amateur National Championships, Ruiz has defeated several opponents.
“I’m so excited to get back in the ring in front of all of my fans in Los Angeles on September 4,” said Ruiz. “This is my chance to prove to everyone that I’m going to be heavyweight champion of the world again. I’m super motivated to be facing a great fighter like Luis Ortiz, so my fans can expect to see me at my best. Everyone has wanted to see this fight and we’re going to give everyone a war on fight night.”
Ortiz (33-2, 28 KOs) has been a mainstay at the top of the heavyweight rankings for years thanks to his outstanding power and superb technical skills; his only losses came in memorable fights against former heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder. Ortiz, who was up in Miami and taught by veteran trainer Herman Caicedo, was born in Camaguey, Cuba. He defeated Travis Kauffman, Christian Hammer, and Razvan Cojanu in three fights during the Wilder bouts. Most recently, on January 1st, Ortiz won a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View, overcoming early difficulty to knock out former heavyweight world champion Charles Martin in the sixth round.
“I’m blessed to be back in a position to get closer to achieving my goal of becoming the first heavyweight champion of the world from Cuba,” said Ortiz. “Anyone who doubts me, has only fueled me to keep going. I know that I have to make a big statement in this fight, and that’s my plan on September 4. I respect Andy Ruiz, but he’s standing in my way and I’m going to do whatever it takes to go through him.”
After losing a close decision to three-division champion Gervonta Davis in December, the 24-year-old Cruz (23 to 2 to 1, 16 KOs) returned to the ring in April and knocked out former champion Yuriorkis Gamboa. Cruz, a Mexico City native, rose quickly in the lightweight rankings in 2020 after shocking seasoned fighter Diego Magdaleno in the opening round in October. Cruz followed that up in 2021 by defeating the previously unbeaten Matas Romero in a unanimous decision in March and the former champion Francisco Vargas in a decision in June, both victories coming before the Davis match.
“I’m very happy and motivated to come back in the ring in front of the great fans in Los Angeles on September 4,” said Cruz. “I’ll be facing a very good opponent and I’ll be back at the same arena where I faced one of the best fighters in the division in Gervonta Davis. Stepping back into the ring there is pumping me up even more and I can’t wait to start throwing my hands-on fight night.”
Ramrez (27 to 23, 12 KOs), who fights out of Sinaloa, Mexico, has won five straight fights to put himself in title contention as he prepares to make his lightweight debut against Cruz. The 29-year-most old’s recent victory came in a decision over Luis Melendez in May. Prior to that, he had easily defeated Miguel Marriaga in a decision in December 2021. Since losing to former featherweight champion Lee Selby in 2017, Ramrez has won seven of his previous eight contests.
“I am coming up in weight for this fight, but that just means I’ll be that much stronger,” said Ramírez. “I’m excited for this opportunity, because after I win, I will be recognized as a top fighter in my new division. He’s not going to outbox me and he can’t knock me out, so he has no way to win. I’m planning on showing the world what I can do against a perfect opponent for me.”
Mares (31 to 3 to 1, 15 KOs), one of the most skilled boxers of this generation, will make a comeback to the ring in an effort to add to his already impressive list of accomplishments in the sport. Mares, who is now a resident of Montebello, California, and was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, competed for Mexico on the Olympic boxing squad in the 2004 Athens Games before going on to win world championships in the bantamweight, super bantamweight, and featherweight divisions. The types of loud fights that distinguished Mares from many of his contemporaries were exemplified in his two contests for the featherweight world title with Leo Santa Cruz. Mares has beaten major challengers and champions during his career, including Daniel Ponce de Leon, Vic Darchinyan, Joseph Agbeko, Anselmo Moreno, and Jesus Cuellar.
“I know everyone is used to seeing me suited and booted on T.V. talking about the beautiful sport of boxing, but let me remind everyone, I’m a bad m-f’er in the ring, and on September 4, the world is going to remember what they missed,” said Mares. “I’m the best in boxing in speed, power, intelligence, and good looks. Miguel Flores is on my radar, and I’m sorry to say, he’s going back to elementary school after meeting me. I’m a master in this game, and I’m back. Welcome to Team Mares 2022.”
In his previous fight, which occurred in June of last year, Flores (24 to 4, 12 KOs) overcame back-to-back losses by winning a decision over Diuhl Olguin. The 29-year-old had lost two fights, one against top challenger Eduardo Ramirez in December 2020 and four-division champion Leo Santa Cruz in November 2019. Flores, who was born in Mexico and currently resides in Spring, Texas, made his pro debut in 2009 at the age of 17 and won his first 22 fights.
“I’m very motivated to be on the big stage once again and I’m excited to get into the ring,” said Flores. “This is a huge opportunity for me against a three-division champion and I’m doing everything I can to make the most of it. This is Michoacán vs. Guadalajara and we’re going to give all the fans a great show on September 4.”
The unbeaten two-time world champion David Benavidez trains alongside the 23-year-old Valenzuela (12-0, 8 KOs), who is aiming to maintain his standing as a contender in 2022. When Valenzuela defeated former world champion, Francisco Vargas, in round one of their fight in April, he was amazing. Born in Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico, Valenzuela began his professional career in 2018 and went on a five-bout knockout run before defeating Deiner Berrio in September 2021 and winning his first fight after 10 rounds.
“I’m extremely motivated for this fight,” said Valenzuela. “My opponent is an accomplished former champion and this is the kind of challenge that I’ve been asking for. I’m going to come into this fight extremely prepared to make another statement on September 4 and give the fans a great show like I always do.”
Since switching to lightweight in 2021, Corrales, 30, (26-4, 10 KOs) has won three straight fights and moved up to the number two spot in the WBA rankings. Fighting out of San Miguelito, Panama, Corrales captured the super featherweight title in 2016 when he traveled to Japan and stopped Takashi Uchiyama. In their rematch, Corrales prevailed through a decision. Additionally, he has triumphed against veteran challenger Robinson Castellanos and current former champion Rene Alvarado.
“Valenzuela is a good young fighter with some skills, but he doesn’t have the experience to handle what I’m bringing to the ring,” said Corrales. “This is going to be like when the great Panamanian champion Roberto Duran took Davey Moore to school. Class is going to be in session on September 4 and no amount of studying is going to have him ready for what I’m planning to do.”