Top lightweight contender and Mexico City-native Isaac “Pitbull” Cruz has vowed to make his country proud and solidify his status in the star-studded 135-pound division when he faces unbeaten Giovanni Cabrera in a WBC and WBA Lightweight Title Eliminator that serves as the Errol Spence Jr. vs. Terence Crawford co-main event live on SHOWTIME PPV Saturday, July 29 in a Premier Boxing Champions event from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
“I am ready to put Mexico on top once again and show that I am meant to go up against the best,” said Cruz. “I’m making sure that I’m working harder and smarter and making the most of everything I do in the gym. It’s not just about how hard you hit, you gotta be smart and have your punches connect in the way that you meant them to land all along.
“It may sound cliche, but it truly is about dedication, hard work and discipline. Being just a regular fighter is taking the easy way out. Saying no to a glass of water or to being with friends is hard. What we do is beautiful, but it’s hard. If you want to be an elite athlete, you have to learn how to live with sacrifice.”
Coming from a family full of professional boxers, including his father and grandfather, Cruz is no secret to the sacrifices his chosen profession requires at the highest level. Although he laments the time missed with his wife and children, it acts as motivation for him to perform at his best.
“The hardest thing I ever had to do was that I had to tell my wife and kids ‘today, I can’t take you for ice cream,’” said Cruz. “I’m fortunate that I train close to them, but I still miss a lot. At the end of the day, it only makes it more important that I make the most of these sacrifices and fight to my full ability. I fight at my best because of the love and support I receive from my family.”
The 25-year-old Cruz has become a fan-favorite amongst the passionate Mexican fans due to his all-action style that calls back to many of boxing’s most memorable Mexican champions and contenders. Although he’s competed at lightweight throughout his career that dates back to 2015, he has no plans of leaving the division and hopes to continue to develop his relationship with fans against the weight class’s other stars.
“I’m totally focused on staying at 135-pounds because it’s where I feel strongest and most comfortable,” said Cruz. “I just want to give everyone watching a great show. I’ve made a connection with the fans because I showed that I’m not afraid to fight the best. I have no fear, just resolve.”
Since giving unbeaten boxing superstar Gervonta “Tank” Davis perhaps the toughest test of his career in their December 2021 clash, Cruz has set his sights on a blockbuster rematch against the WBA Lightweight Title holder. However, his plans are set beyond just Davis, with eyes on clearing out the entire division before settling a grudge match against Ryan Garcia.
“I want the American fans to know me as well as the Mexican fans, so I have to go up against the very best,” said Cruz. “First, I want that rematch with Gervonta Davis no matter what. After that, I want to face Devin Haney and Vasyl Lomachenko. Then I’d like to face another contender in this division, and finally move up and take out Ryan Garcia.”