Ronnie Shields' predictions: Joshua vs Ruiz 2, Wilder vs Ortiz 2
Recently, FightHype.com caught up with elite trainer Ronnie Shields to get his input on these massive showdowns.
Shields, who sported a 26-6, 19 KO record as a 1980s super lightweight contender, has trained the likes of Jermall Charlo, Jermell Charlo, Jesus Chavez, Kermit Cintron, Vernon Forrest, Arturo Gatti, Evander Holyfield, Erislandy Lara, Jesse James Leija, Vanes Martirosyan, Guillermo Rigondeaux, David Tua, Mike Tyson and Pernell Whitaker.
Joshua vs Ruiz 2
When asked if he was shocked by the outcome in June, Shields replied, "It didn't surprise me. I've been watching Andy Ruiz for a long time ...he doesn't look the part but he is the part."
Officially, Ruiz is 33-1, 22 KOs but some insist he's 34-0, unofficially. In 2017, Ruiz dropped a somewhat controversial razor thin decision to then WBO Champion Joseph Parker in the latter's native New Zealand. Had Parker vs Ruiz taken place outside of Kiwi territory, would the result have been the same?
"I predict him to win again by KO," said Shields.
"I think he stole Joshua's heart when Joshua dropped him and he got back up and nothing happened. I really think Joshua realizes he can't hurt this guy. Joshua hit him with some good shots [and] dropped him but he didn't do anything to him, and he hit Joshua and Joshua couldn't take it."
Joshua vs Ruiz 2 Prediction: Ruiz by KO
Confidence means a lot and doesn't show in the statistics. Having already KO'd AJ, Ruiz will be even more confident in the rematch. If he's not overconfident, it should work to his advantage. Win or lose, don't be surprised to see an even better version of Ruiz in the rematch.
Wilder vs Ortiz 2
Does Shields think Ortiz will give Wilder problems again?
In Round 7,Ortiz had Wilder badly hurt. Deontay was clipped by a counter right hook from Ortiz that noticeably stunned the former. Ortiz followed-up with a hard left hook before unleashing hard punches in bunches that seemed to daze Wilder who was just hanging on to survive the round.
It was, by far, Deontay's scariest moment as a pro. But, courageously, a woozy Wilder would make it to the bell.
"Of course Ortiz will give Wilder problems," the trainer chimed. "Ortiz is a hard guy to fight and, plus, he's a big, strong guy. I think [Wilder is] is going to stop him again but it's going to be a tough fight like the first one."
"I think Wilder is confident in his power. He realizes he can hurt you. He has to be smart, though, because he saw in the first fight he can get hit and rocked. Ortiz has the power to win this fight but I think Wilder has to fight smarter than he did the first time."
Could Wilder vs Ortiz 2 possibly go to the cards? If so, could Ortiz win on points?
Let's not forget, prior to Wilder's 10th Round TKO, all three judges had Wilder up by just a point, 85-84. And, both Showtime and CBS Sports had it 86-83 in favour of Ortiz.
"It can happen that way (Ortiz winning by points), but I think Wilder is smart enough to know what he has to do. He has to control the fight EARLY. He can't let Ortiz control the fight like he did the first time."
Wilder vs Ortiz 2 Prediction: Wilder by KO
For their first encounter, Wilder was solid, but not overwhelming, favorite. Deontay sat at 4/6 while Ortiz was slated as the 6/5 underdog.
Despite Ortiz's heroics in their first fight, Wilder opens up as an even heavier favorite for the rematch. The champion sits at 2/9 while Ortiz is quite literally a 3 to 1 underdog.
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