Deontay Wilder and Andy Ruiz Jr were ordered to fight last November by the WBC, but the negotiations fell apart in a wave of accusations.
It was to be a final eliminator for a shot at Tyson Fury and his World Heavyweight Title, but, despite the prize on offer, Wilder and Ruiz failed to come to terms.
Ruiz – who was a world champion for six months after upsetting the odds against Anthony Joshua before losing the rematch – said Wilder’s side didn’t offer enough of a purse.
Wilder – who held the WBC belt for near half a decade before losing to Fury – said Ruiz was asking for way too much.
In an interview with The Last Stand, the knockout artist from Alabama said that Ruiz was now ‘on the shelf’ and would struggle to get back to the top table.
“You’ve got the next fighter in line ready and waiting. We told Andy this. We kept telling him. His father was the one that kept saying Andy’s ready, where we gonna fight, and when it came down to it all the excuses in the book. They overpriced themselves. We told them, you’re gonna be on the shelf with that mentality.
They thinking because he beat Joshua and gained all of those titles he’s supposed to have all this money, but it was only for six months. It would’ve been lesser than that if y’all got the fights on. So you can’t really hold that hostage and think you’re gonna get all this type of this money.
‘But he was a champion’ – yeah but for a short period of time. What did you do with it? You didn’t have no title defences. None of that. All that stuff counts.”
With the WBC’s order now rescinded, Wilder confirmed that the fight was completely off the table, and blamed Ruiz Jr’s father for the fall out.
“They came back three or four times calling, his pops calling ‘it was Andy, he’s going through this and that’ … Nah pops, it wasn’t Andy, it was you.”
“For that reason it fell through … Now I’ve move on to bigger and better opportunities.”
As Ruiz promises a big 2024 following over a year of inactivity and shoulder surgery, Wilder readies himself for a fight against Joseph Parker on December 23.