Greatness Awaits Isaac "Pitbull" Cruz

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The Mexican superstar seeks to add to his country's rich boxing legacy when he challenges Rolando "Rolly" Romero for Romero's WBA 140-pound World Title Saturday, March 30 in a PBC on Prime Video Pay-Per-View at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

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Cruz vs Ramirez - Watch Fight Highlights | September 4, 2022

Isaac "Pitbull" Cruz was asked recently whether he believes he has won the hearts of fans in his native Mexico.

He paused before answering, his way of saying that’s a tricky proposition. Contemporary fighters are compared to the likes of Ruben Olivares, Salvador Sanchez, Julio Cesar Chavez and Canelo Alvarez in the boxing crazy country. Standards are high.

All Cruz can do is continue to succeed in the ring, which would allow him to convince any remaining doubters that he’s a genuine star and join the legends mentioned above.

That includes his next – and biggest – assignment: He will challenge WBA Super Lightweight World Champion Rolando “Rolly” Romero Saturday, March 30, in the co-main event of the Keith Thurman-Tim Tszyu PBC on Prime Video Pay-Per-View (8pm ET/5pm PT), live from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

“Yeah, Mexican fans are hard to win over. They’re very discerning,” Cruz told PBC through a translator. “I do think I’ll win them over with a victory (over Romero) because I’ll be putting the Mexican flag at its highest point, way up high.”

Cruz (25-2-1, 17 KOs) has already seized the attention of fans in Mexico and beyond with a series of eye-catching performances.

One that underscored his ability to brutally dismantle a capable opponent was his 53-second knockout of former title challenger Diego Magdaleno in October 2020, which sent a sizeable ripple across the boxing world.

Three fights later came his true coming out, a memorable performance in his pay-per-view main event debut against undefeated three-division world champion and boxing superstar Gervonta “Tank” Davis in December 2021.

Cruz came up short on the cards – losing 116-112, 115-113 and 115-113 – but he pushed “Tank” harder than anyone before or since at only 23 years old with his suffocating pressure, leaving no doubt that a special 135-pounder had arrived on the scene.

β€œ β€œAll I can do is prove to everyone why I am deserving of this shot to be a world champion and why I should be in the biggest fights.” ” Super Lightweight Contender - Isaac "Pitbull" Cruz

Of course, Cruz was disappointed – he still believes he deserved the nod – but his strong showing made him a major player in a deep division.

He settled into a waiting game after that, maintaining his position as a top contender – with victories over Yuriorkis Gamboa, Eduardo Ramires and Giovanni Cabrera – until a chance to fight for a world title presented itself.

And now it has, against a well-established, action fighter whose aggressive style should suit Cruz’s well.

What about moving up from 135, at which he had fought his entire career? No problem whatsoever, he said. He wasn’t going to let this opportunity slip away because of weight. He knows they’re precious.

“This is huge motivation,” he said. “It’s a great source of happiness for me. I’m channeling that into really training hard so I can make a great impression at 140 pounds.

“All I can do is prove to everyone why I am deserving of this shot to be a world champion and why I should be in the biggest fights.”

To that end, Cruz has shied away from side issues that could distract him.

He was asked about a prominent common opponent: Davis stopped Romero in six rounds in May 2022, Cruz gave the pound-for-pounder his toughest fight. Does that mean anything?

“That’s in the past,” Cruz said.

And what about Romero’s comments, including his knockout prediction and the fact he expects a “Mexican slugfest.” Cruz wouldn’t bite, saying only that the latter would mean that “the fans would be the true winners.”

As Cruz sees it, his job is to focus 100 percent on his preparation so he can rise to the occasion and fulfill his destiny.

“I’m ready for all 12 rounds, for whatever is going to happen,” he said. “… I’m really happy to be part of the first ever broadcast of Prime Video with PBC. It’s going to be really exciting.”

For a closer look at Isaac Cruz, check out his fighter page. 

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