Hearn: ‘Canelo’s next fight SHOULD be Gennady Golovkin’
By Barry Holbrook: Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn says Saul Canelo Alvarez’s next fight SHOULD be against Gennadiy Golovkin in May of 2020, as that’s who DAZN and the fans want him to fight. If Canelo doesn’t face GGG, then his next fight will likely be against one of four other fighters he has signed with his Matchroom Boxing stable. Those fighters are as follows:
- Callum Smith
- Billy Joe Saunders
- Demetrius Andrade
- Dmitry Bivol
Hearn doubts that Canelo, 5’8″, will agree to fight the 6’3″ Callum for his WBA super middleweight title due to the size issues he would have against him. Nevertheless, Hearn would still like to make that fight.
He’d also like to set-up a unification match between WBA light heavyweight champion Bivol (17-0, 11 KOs) and Canelo now that the Mexican star holds the WBO 175-lb belt after his 11th round knockout win over Sergey Kovalev last Saturday. Bivol, 6’0″, presents a size problem for Canelo as well. Although Bivol isn’t as tall as Callum, he’s still a big guy, and would have an advantage over Canelo Alvarez.
Hearn – Canelo should be #1 pound-for-pound
“Very impressive in moving up and knocking out a bigger guy like that,” said Hearn to Fighthub about Canelo Alvarez’s win over Kovalev. “We always juggle the pound-for-pound list. Is it Lomachenko or is it Usyk or Canelo. I really think after that, you’ve got to give it to Canelo for the pound-for-pound #1. He’s a four-weight world champion, and he’s really a middleweight.
“He moved up to light heavyweight and beat a very good champion in Kovalev. It was a good win. He looked fixed up when he was lying on the ropes,” said Hearn in commenting about what some boxing fans are saying in calling the Canelo-Kovalev fight ‘fixed.’
It’s hard to deny Canelo the #1 spot on the pound-for-pound list after his win over Kovalev last weekend. The two fighters in front of Canelo, #1 Vasiliy Lomachenko and #2 Terence Crawford, aren’t moving in weight and beating guys the way Canelo is doing. Since last year, Canelo has beaten the #1 middleweight in Golovkin, captured division title at 168 against Rocky Fielding, and now a title at 175 against Kovalev. Lomachenko and Crawford doing things like that. If Canelo does that, then he’s got to be #1 on the pound-for-pound list.
Canelo is talking about possibly moving up to cruiserweight to win a belt in that division.
Canelo has five options for next fight
“A lot of people had Kovalev winning that fight,” said Hearn. “It was a close fight. but it wasn’t close at the end. We’ve got five guys for him [Canelo]. We’ve got Gennady Golovkin, Billy Joe Saunders, Demetrius Andrade, Dmitry Bivol at 175 in a unification fight, and also we’ve got Callum Smith if he can beat John Ryder on November 23rd or John Ryder. It’s going to be interesting to see what happens, and I think his next fight has to come from one of our guys.
“His next fight should be Gennadiy Golovkin. I think that’s a fight that everyone wants to see, and I think it’s a fight that DAZN will push for. But ultimately when you’re pound-for-pound #1, you make the choice. It’s all about leverage and pushing,” said Hearn about Canelo saying that he would consider GGG fight if it makes “business sense.” “With the situation with Golden Boy, obviously Canelo is going to want a lot of money,” said Hearn.
In looking Hearn’s five-fighter list for Canelo, you can rule out Andrade, Callum, Saunders and Bivol right away. Canelo isn’t going to fight those guys. Saunders has an ugly style that would involve a lot of movement that make a fight between him and Canelo a cat and mouse affair.
If Canelo liked that fight, he and his trainer Eddy Reynoso would have mentioned it already. It’s obviously wishful thinking on Hearn’s part in bringing up Saunders’ name as a potential opponent for Canelo. Hearn needs to match Saunders with Callum, considering that’s a contest that he could easily make.
Golovkin meeting with Hearn to discuss next fight
“I’m seeing him [Golovkin] next week,” said Hearn. “Seeing him on Thursday. So we’re going to plan the next fight. He does have a mandatory [Kamil Szeremeta] that the IBF has ordered.
“They can take care of that in February, and still fight Canelo in May no problem. I think DAZN is going to want it [Canelo vs. Golovkin] to happen. I think it’s a great fight. It’s probably the biggest fight in boxing right now,” said Hearn.
Golovkin’s next fight will be against his IBF mandatory Kamil Szeremeta. The mandatory isn’t due yet, but they wanted to get it out of the way early. It’s believed by a lot of boxing fans that Team GGG didn’t want to take another risky fight after his close call with Sergiy Derevyanchenko. Golovkin almost lost the fight with Derevyanchenko last October in winning a narrow 12 round decision.
If Golovkin didn’t fight the weak punching Szeremeta, boxing fans would want to see him fight Derevyanchenko in a rematch or Callum. Golovkin wants the trilogy fight with Canelo Alvarez, and he’s not going to put that match in jeopardy by facing someone that could maybe beat him.
Canelo’s team likes Saunders fight – Hearn
“We also have four or five other guys to fight as well,” said Hearn. “But I think there will be an effort from the parties to get that fight [Canelo-GGG]. I think they [Team Canelo] like the Billy Joe Saunders fight. He’s a champion at 168, and so is Callum Smith. But that’s a tough fight for them in terms of size.
“Dmitry Bivol is there if they want to unify at 175. That would be impressive, and Demetrius Andrade is there to win the other remaining belt at 160. So we’ve got so many options for him. It’ll be interesting to see which option they choose,” said Hearn about Canelo’s next opponent for May 2020.
It’s hard to believe what Hearn is saying about Canelo’s team liking the Saunders fight. There are guys that Canelo and Reynoso have their eyes on at 160 and 168, but Saunders probably isn’t one of them. It wouldn’t be surprising if Canelo were to fight Derevyanchenko next. He’s got a style that would be easier for Canelo to solve than fighting one of Hearn’s five fighters.