ANDY RUIZ JR is nearing a return to the ring with talks to fight Chris Arreola “looking very good”.
The Mexican shocked the world a year ago with one of the biggest upsets in boxing history as he defeated Anthony Joshua to become heavyweight champ.
His brief reign was ended in December as AJ bounced back to regain the belts in their Saudi Arabia rematch.
Ruiz Jr was heavily criticised after that loss for not taking his training seriously as he enjoyed the fame and fortunes of being top dog, leading to a split with coach Manny Robles.
Now the 30-year-old, famed for his love of Snickers, has teamed up with Eddy Reynoso and could be about to make a comeback against countryman Arreola, aged 39.
His potential opponent told Sky Sports: “Yes, actually there’s been a couple of talks [about Ruiz Jr fight], but I’m not at liberty of saying anything right now.
“But they are looking fairly good. Looking very good. I’m actually very excited for that fight.
“I think that’s the only fight that looks promising for myself.
“If that fight doesn’t come around, then you know, I’m OK with staying at home.
“But that’s the only fight that’s very enticing, not only to myself, also for the boxing fans.
“I think the boxing fans will love a boxing fight with two Mexican heavyweights that are going at it.”
Arreola, who resides in America like his potential opponent, is a three-time world title challenger and broke the CompuBox record for most punches thrown during his losing effort to Adam Kownacki in August.
WBA still has both men within title shot contention, with Arreola ranked seventh while Ruiz Jr is fourth.
And Arreola has promised to produce an explosive display and bring excitement to fans if they can get a deal over the line to fight.
He added: “We’re both Californians, we’re both in the rankings, we’re both fan-friendly fighters and we’re both of Mexican heritage.
“We all know what Mexican fighters bring to the table. They bring non-stop excitement.
“We just come forward and we just love to fight.
“I think it will be a great fight between me and Andy.”