The powerful top lightweight contender is all about the boxing life, as he explains ahead of his showdown versus Giovanni Cabrera Saturday, July 29 on SHOWTIME Pay-Per-View.
Isaac Jonathan “Pitbull” Cruz Gonzalez is one of the top lightweights in the world, proving time and time again that he is a fierce force to be reckoned with.
On Saturday, July 29, Cruz (24-2-1, 17 KOs) will battle the unbeaten Giovanni Cabrera of Chicago, Illinois in a WBC and WBA Lightweight Title Eliminator (21-0, 7 KOs) in a Premier Boxing Champions event at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, live on SHOWTIME Pay-Per-View (8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT).
The bout will be the co-main event of the eagerly-awaited mega-showdown between unified WBC, WBA and IBF Welterweight World Champion Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr. (28-0, 22 KOs) and WBO 147-pound world champion Terrence “Bud” Crawford (39-0, 30 KOs) for the Undisputed Welterweight World Championship.
Rising from Mexico City, Mexico, Cruz proudly represents the legacy of a fighting family; a third-generation boxer who started training at the age of seven. He established his life goals well before he could grow a mustache, aiming to become a world boxing champion. During his amateur career, Cruz won an impressive 73 out of 85 bouts, with an astonishing 50 knockouts to his name. From 2010-2014, he reigned as the Mexico City champion and participated in three Olympic trials.
At 16 years old, Cruz made his highly-anticipated debut in March 2015 with a lightning-fast 90-second stoppage of Luis Yan Revilla, who represented his first of five victories, three of which were secured by a knockout.
In October 2020, Cruz burst onto the lightweight scene with a devastating first-round knockout of the seasoned veteran Diego Magdaleno before securing dominant decisions over Francisco Vargas and Jose Matias Romero. The 25-year old slugger has delivered two consecutive knockouts since a competitive decision loss to undefeated superstar Gervonta “Tank” Davis in December 2021.
Cruz looks to make another statement when he faces Cabrera on Saturday night. But before he does that, he goes 12 rounds with us.
Where does your nickname “Pitbull” come from?
It was a nickname that I got here in Mexico City and it was purely based on my fighting style and the way I portray myself inside the ring.
Did you ever have any other nicknames?
I’ve had plenty of nicknames during my life in Mexico, nicknames are very common but my three favorites that I’ve had so far are the Mexican Mike Tyson, The Bomber and The Cannonball.
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not training?
I just like to enjoy my time with family, that’s the best thing I can do when I’m not training. Be with my kids, be with my wife and have quality time with them.
What was your favorite arena that you have fought at and why?
I really don’t have a preference personally as far as which stadium or arena because they’re all beautiful, I can’t complain. But there’s one that will forever be remembered by me, it’s the Alamodome in San Antonio because that’s when the world got to know who Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz is.
How do you celebrate after winning a fight?
Nothing big or extravagant. After a fight is over, I’d like to go to a hotel, relax, be with my family, with my wife and my kids, and once I’m in Mexico, we'll get together with the fam and we have a nice meal.
What’s your favorite music to listen to while training?
It’s an eclectic kind of taste because it comes in a range, from original Mexican music to electronic and to EDM so it goes around.
Who was your favorite fighter growing up?
I never really had an idol or like a favorite fighter, I just love boxing and I love picking apart different things from all the greats and trying to make them my own. Obviously you can’t replicate them but still, there is something that I try to take the best out of everybody.
Who is your biggest inspiration?
It’s all about my wife and my kids, they are my biggest inspiration. They’re the ones that get me through the hard training, the hard days, through the fights and the ones I look forward to seeing the most after all these things are done.
What is your favorite childhood memory?
When I first became the national champion in Mexico. I was 12 years old back in ‘02.
If Isaac Cruz wasn’t a boxer, what would he be?
He would've been like Martin [Bater], a translator, he loves languages. Or he’d love to be a chef, Chef Cruz, he’s a foodie.
If you could have any superpower, what would it be?
It would be to fly.
For a closer look at Isaac Cruz, check out his fighter page.