Down in round two, and wobbled in the next heat, Andy Ruiz found his rhythm to defeat game Chris Arreola by 12-round unanimous decision at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, Ca. Saturday night.

The scores were 117-110 and 118-109 twice.

Ruiz, fighting for the first time since losing his crown to Anthony Joshua in a rematch, fired jabs up and down in the opening round. Arreola, moving slightly to his left jabbed. Ruiz (34-2, 22 KOs) connected with two hard rights to the chin. Arreola (38-7, 33 KOs) continued to box in round two. Ruiz landed a combination, but a short counter hook floored him. Ruiz got up quickly, more surprised than hurt and fought back, until Arreola jolted him again.

Arreola,40, wobbled Ruiz with a big combination in round three. He was fighting a very intelligent fight. But could he keep it up? Ruiz connected with a strafing left hook. Another Ruiz shot knocked Arreola back a step. An uppercut also landed. Arreola landed a sweet uppercut. Ruiz,31,clipped Arreola with a combo in round four. Arreola who weighed 228 pounds, the lightest of his career, connected with a chopping right. Ruiz countered with a left hook.

In round five, both fighters scored with jabs. Arreola, a 20-1 underdog. landed a right hand. Ruiz worked the body. He also caught Arreola with a left hook. A few seconds later a three-punch combination also scored. Ruiz knocked Arreola’s head back in round six. A hook caught Arreola. Ruiz had found his rhythm. His counters were scoring consistently. Ruiz pumped his jab in round seven. It scored. A one-two connected. Arreola clipped Ruiz with a right.

Arreola was more aggressive in round eight. Ruiz continued to jab to the body. He fired combinations. He was moving in, unleashing, and moving away. Ruiz jabbed to the head in round nine. A double hook scored. Arreola wasn’t doing much. He did land a good bodyshot. So did Ruiz.

In round 10, Ruiz connected with a huge left hook. He peppered Arreola with lefts. Arreola, who appeared to be fighting with an injured left shoulder, missed with a right. Ruiz went back to the body and head. Ruiz kept beating Arreola to the punch in round 11. He worked an uppercut into his repartee. Arreola let a right go but missed. Ruiz fired his own right that cracked Arreola. He was dominating.

In the 12th and final round, Ruiz came out firing. He landed two combos. Arreola took the punches without incident. Ruiz lets his hands go some more. Arreola had no answer.

Source: John J. Raspanti