Anthony Joshua 'Seriously Considering' MSG for Site of Andy Ruiz Jr. Rematch

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistJune 8, 2019

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 01: The New York crowd after Andy Ruiz defeated Anthony Joshua due to referee stoppage in the seventh round after their IBF/WBA/WBO World heavyweight championship match at Madison Square Garden on June 1st, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Anthony Geathers/Getty Images)
Anthony Geathers/Getty Images

Although the United Kingdom appeared to be the front-runner to host an Andy Ruiz Jr.-Anthony Joshua rematch, Madison Square Garden is being given serious consideration for the showdown.

Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn revealed to ESPN.com's Dan Rafael on Saturday that Joshua is interested in returning to the venue of his shocking defeat to try to atone for the loss: 

"(American broadcast partner) DAZN would prefer it in the U.S. They'd still cover it in the U.K., of course. (British broadcaster) Sky would prefer it in the U.K. For me, I want to win the fight so there is an edge to doing the fight in the U.K., unquestionably. But AJ is like, 'Do you not think I should go back to where it went wrong and put it right?' I said, 'That's an incredible attitude to have but we need to win the fight.'

"He said, 'I almost feel like it's a cop out making Ruiz come to my backyard. He's the champion. It will be more spectacular if I beat him (at Madison Square Garden).' I'm like, 'I agree but...' That's the conversations at the moment. He's thinking if he put it right there it would (be) even more spectacular than he if put it right in the U.K."

Hearn said after last weekend's bout, per ESPN's Ariel Helwani, that a rematch was expected to happen in either November or December in Joshua's native U.K. That appeared to be fine with Ruiz, who said on Jimmy Kimmel Live earlier this week that he was willing to fight Joshua anywhere (around the 2:35 mark):

Now, it appears the rematch is destined for New York.

The June 1 bout against Ruiz marked Joshua's first fight in the United States. While he is open to fighting Ruiz in the U.S. again, he would apparently only want to do so at Madison Square Garden.

"It's not a case of AJ saying bring the rematch back to the States. It's a case of him saying do it where it went wrong, in that exact ring," Hearn told Rafael. "He's like if I'm going to put these demons to bed I will never do that until I box there again."

Regardless of the venue or date, a rematch is seemingly inevitable.

Of note, Hearn added that Joshua "doesn't remember a whole lot after the third round" as a result of a concussion he suffered during the fight.