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Brandon Rios with chance for Canelo or Canelo fights

Brandon Rios Canelo Alvarez Miguel Cotto Timothy Bradley(Photo Credit: Chris Farina/Top Rank) By Tim Fletcher: Brandon Rios (33-2-1, 24 KOs) has a chance to get a big payday if he can beat WBO welterweight champion Tim Bradley (32-1-1, 12 KOs) on Saturday night in their fight on HBO. According to Rios’ trainer Robert Garcia, Rios’ manager Cameron Dunkin is talking about Rios potentially fighting Saul “Canelo” Alvarez or Miguel Cotto, depending on which of those two fighters emerge victorious from their fight on November 21st.

It’s obvious a little more tricky if Cotto is the one who comes out on top in his fight against Canelo, because he used to be with Top Rank and it is unclear whether he’ll be agreeable to fight a Top Rank fighter like Rios.

Oscar De La Hoya, the promoter for Canelo, has already spoken to Rios’ promoter Bob Arum and said he’d be interested in a fight involving the winner of the Bradley-Rios fight facing Canelo if he can get past Cotto.

Rios is going to have a tough time trying to do his part to get a big money fight against the Cotto vs. Canelo winner, because he’ll be giving up a lot in terms of hand speed and mobility against Bradley.

While Bradley isn’t in the same class as Manny Pacquiao, who beat Rios with ease in 2013, he’s still close enough to that level to totally dominate a fighter like Rios. Bradley will be a lot more disciplined for this fight than he has in the past, because he’s now being trained by Teddy Atlas. He’s not going to let Bradley just slug it out with Rios like he might have done in the past when he was trained by Joel Diaz.

“We need the best Brandon Rios to beat Timothy Bradley,” Robert Garcia said to secondsout. “We can’t have a Brandon with an injury. We’re going to have the Brandon that is motivated and hungry to be something in boxing. Brandon is going to be in great shape for the fight. If we win this fight, Cameron Dunkin [Rios’ manager] has plans for the future. Top Rank has already told him what’s possible out there. If we win, we’re back on top with some really nice paydays. Canelo has been mentioned, but Canelo has a very dangerous fight against Cotto. Cameron has mentioned Cotto as a possibility,” Garcia said.

Rios is not the guy that boxing fans wants to see the Cotto vs. Canelo winner fight. The fans want to see the winner of that fight face IBF/IBO/WBA middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (34-0, 31 KOs). However, the management for Cotto and Canelo might not be on the same page as the fans. They appear to want to wait on the Golovkin fight in order for it to marinate more in order to make it a much bigger fight in the future.

Golovkin’s recent poor PPV numbers for his fight against former IBF middleweight champion David Lemieux last month suggests that a fight between Golovkin and the Cotto-Canelo winner might not do more than 300,000 PPV buys. That’s what the Cotto vs. Sergio Martinez fight did. If Golovkin is little more than another Sergio Martinez in terms of popularity in the United States, then it doesn’t make sense for the Cotto-Canelo winner to face him until he does become a big draw.

If Golovkin never becomes popular enough for them to bother fighting him, then so be it. If the difference in money in fighting Golovkin and fighting the lesser fighters isn’t that much, then there’s no reason for Cotto or Canelo to ever fight him. Golovkin is too tough of an out for the little money that would be made from that fight.

“There’s other welterweights that Top Rank has. There’s also junior welterweights that Top Rank has; maybe at a catch-weight,” Garcia said. “We can do two or three pounds under 147 at a catch-weight. There’s some great names that Top Rank has that would make good sense for us. Two to three pounds wouldn’t be much for Brandon to lose,” Garcia said.

At 140, Top Rank has Viktor Postol and Terence Crawford. I wouldn’t consider fights against either of them as being big money fights for Rios. Garcia might be over-thinking if he believes there would be big money for Rios in fighting those guys. There wouldn’t be much money in those fights. It would be like Rios fighting Diego Chaves again.

Ruslan Provodnikov would be an option for Rios as well, but he’s lost 3 out of his last 5 fights, and it wouldn’t be a big fight either. At welterweight, the only other guy that Top Rank has besides Pacquiao, and Bradley is Jessie Vargas. That wouldn’t be a big fight either. Vargas was recently soundly beaten by Bradley last summer.

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