Re: Prime James J. Jeffries vs Jack Johnson
I actually think that Ruhlin was a pretty good choice as a title opponent.
He had been very highly regarded before Fitz beat him, and Fitz seems to have refused a title fight with Jeffries, for reasons that are hard to understand.
I think Jeffries just got fed up with it and took the second best available challenger.
I think it is a stretch to say that Ruhlin was damaged goods after the Fitzsimmons fight. Only Jeffries beat him in the next four years.