Dela Hoya: ‘NOBODY wants to fight Canelo, he’s the superstar in boxing’
By Dan Ambrose: Earlier this year, Golden Boy Promotions boss Oscar De La Hoya complained bitterly about how supposedly no one wanted to face Canelo Alvarez.
At the time, De La Hoya was an unhappy camper because his two intended targets for Canelo, Billy Joe Saunders, and Callum Smith, wanted more money than what they were interested n paying to face the Mexican star.
Saunders and Callum are considered easy marks and soft targets at 168. The talented fighters in the super middleweight and light heavyweight are these four:
- David Benavidez
- Caleb Plant
- Artur Beterbiev
- Dmitry Bivol
What was interesting is how De La Hoya made the statement that the top fighters are “AFRAID” to fight Canelo. The truth of the matter is, NO one is afraid to fight Canelo.
Why isn’t Canelo fighting Beterbiev, Bivol, or Benavidez?
You can argue that Canelo stepped up to face the lions at 168 and 175, like Artur Beterbiev, Dmitry Bivol, and David Benavidez. Those are just three of many top fighters that are chomping at the bit to face Canelo, but he’s shown no interest in fighting any of them.
“It’s funny how everyone talks a big game; ‘I want Canelo and I can beat Canelo.’ That’s BS,” said Dela Hoya to DAZN last February. “They’re all AFRAID of him.
“He is the superstar in boxing, and if you fight him, you’ll make the most money. What’s the problem? Pull the trigger. Let’s make these fights happen…I’ve got four other guys that I can negotiate with and talk to.”
People want to see Canelo stay at 175 and take on the unbeaten IBF/WBC light heavyweight champion Beterbiev (15-0, 15 KOs). That’s who Canelo should have fought last November when he moved up to 175 to challenge for a world title.
Rather than take on Beterbiev, which is what fans wanted, Canelo chose the weakest link in over-the-hill 36-year-old Sergey Kovalev.
This would have been a good choice seven years ago in 2013 when Kovalev was in his prime, but not now. Kovalev is so severely shot that he was viewed as a paper champion at 175, and it looked like a weak move on Canelo’s part in choosing him to challenge for a world title.
No one is afraid of Canelo
De La Hoya is wasting Canelo’s time in continuing to put him in with the low lying fruit at 168 and 175. Gennadiy Golovkin wants his trilogy fight already after arguably beating Canelo twice already in the eyes of fans.
Fans see Canelo as 0-2 in his two fights with GGG, and it’s interesting how the Golden Boy star has been dragging his feet about facing Golovkin again. Some fans think Canelo is intentionally waiting to age the 38-year-old Golovkin more in hopes that his skills will fade more before facing him again.
When boxing resumes in 2020 or 2021, Canelo is still expected to burn through one of his DAZN fights by facing Saunders, who U.S fans have no interest in seeing. Saunders is not only an unknown with the American boxing fans, but he also has an off-putting fighting style, which involves a lot of spoiling.
If Canelo wants to impress fans and show that he’s NOT afraid to fight the best, then he should scrap the idea of facing Saunders and instead arrange a fight against either Beterbiev or Dmitry Bivol.
Those are the guys that Canelo should have fought to start with last November instead of hand-picking the faded Kovalev to win an easy world title. De La Hoya won’t need to complain about how nobody wants to fight Canelo if he asks Beterbiev or Bivol to fight him. Those guys will take a fight with Canelo in a second, and the same applies to David Benavidez.
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