By Charles Brun: Billy Joe Saunders says he’s going to speak with his promoter Eddie Hearn to get him another fight if Canelo Alvarez doesn’t make the call to setup a fight between them soon.
WBO super middleweight champion Saunders (29-0, 14 KOs) says he’s been WAITING a long long for Team Canelo to start the negotiations, and he’s not going to continue to wait if it looks like the fight is not going to take place.
It’s not a good sign that Canelo and Golden Boy Promotions haven’t started negotiations with Saunders or Callum Smith yet. That’s a big hint that Saunders and Callum aren’t what Canelo is looking for in his next bout on May 2.
Canelo needs an opponent that will attract subscribers to DAZN, and Saunders and Callum fall short of the mark. As many have said, Saunders and Smith are in the same league as Rocky Fielding as far being known by American boxing fans.
Billy Joe wants Callum Smith fight as alternative option to Canelo match
Saunders, 30, wants to fight in April, possibly in a unification fight against fellow Matchroom fighter Callum Smith. He’s currently waiting on the Canelo fight as well right now, but he can’t just sit paralyzed forever and end up missing out on a fight in the first half of 2020.
Saunders wants to fight Callum, and a match between them would make a lot of noise in the UK. The U.S boxing public won’t care much about a Saunders-Smith fight, but the British fans would love to see this match.
Billy Joe’s promoter Eddie Hearn should be starting negotiations for a fight with Callum right now, and not waste valuable time waiting for a call that might not ever come from Canelo’s team.
Saunders: It won’t be big downer if I don’t get Canelo fight
“I don’t really know. My management is doing everything they can to find out,” said Saunders to Boxing Social on a fight against Canelo Alvarez. “I know that Canelo’s team contacted Eddie Hearn about myself and Callum Smith, but I’ve been here before with Golovkin and Canelo himself. But then the carpet pulls from underneath.
“I’m willing to fight the best. But to make all this s– about fighting the Japanese [fighter Ryota Murata]. That’s never going to happen. DAZN can’t be silly to do that, because what fan is going to tune in to watch that. You might get a good gate [in Japan], but no one is going to stay up to watch that in all these countries.
“That’s just a poor, poor fight,” said Saunders on Canelo fighting Murata. “I think a fair fight for Canelo for the fans is myself or Callum Smith. I’ve left it in my management’s hands at MTK. Whatever they decide.
“I’ve texted Eddie Hearn myself,” said Saunders. “Whatever they go with, I’m willing to go. If anyone can make it, I can. I have faith in them. If not, then it’s not a big downer to me,” said Saunders about what his reaction would be if he doesn’t get Canelo fight.
It looks like Saunders is kidding himself and the fans by saying that it WON’T be a “downer” if he doesn’t get a fight against Canelo Alvarez. Look at all the money Canelo’s last opponent Sergey ‘Krusher’ Kovalev got for his fight against him on November 2.
Kovalev reportedly made $12 million for that fight. It’s unclear what Saunder is getting for his fights, but this writer would venture to get that it’s not $12 million.
Saunders thinks his fighting style gives Canelo problems
“It would be good to fight him, but styles make fights, and I think that my style is probably not what they’re looking for at the minute,” said Saunders on Team Canelo. “Maybe I’m thinking the end of April,” said Saunders when asked when he plans on fighting next.
“Me, I’m up for that fight, and I’ve been up for that fight since I became world champion and he became world champion,” Saunders said about a fight between him and Callum. “It’s a good fight for the fans, and it’s a brilliant fight for us. I know Callum isn’t ducking anyone, but I think it makes sense for us two to fight.
“We’ll see what happens. Me or him could get the Canelo fight. If he gets it, good luck to him. I want a big fight either way. So I’m looking forward to announcing something very soon,” said Saunders on him or Callum getting the Canelo fight.
Canelo would have problems with Saunders’ style of fighting, especially if he runs around the ring all night like we’ve seen from him in the past. But that’s precisely why he’s not likely to get the fight.
Canelo and his promoters at Golden Boy Promotions probably aren’t excited about being in with a runner/spoiler like Saunders, because it’s the opposite of the normal styles he fights. Erislandy Lara gave Canelo problems by staying on the outside, jabbing and moving the entire time in their fight in 2014.
Afterwards, Canelo wasn’t happy with the way the fight went, and you can’t blame him. Lara looked like he didn’t want to mix it up, and it cost him the fight. Saunders is obviously slower, and less talented than Lara, but he’s still basically a spoiler.