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Canelo Alvarez wants a TOP fighter for September 12 says Eric Gomez

Canelo Alvarez Sergiy Derevyanchenko

By Matt Lieberman: Canelo Alvarez wants a top fighter for his September 12 bout on DAZN, according to Golden Boy Promotions president Eric Gomez. He says they have a couple of names that are under consideration for that date.

Gomez isn’t ruling out Canelo facing one of the British super middleweights John Ryder and Callum Smith. But he realizes that it’s going to be challenging to get one of them into the U.S. to take the fight with Alvarez because of the travel restrictions.

What’s surprising is Canelo will be taking a pay-cut, says Gomez. Alvarez is guaranteed $33 million from DAZN as part of his contract, so it’s unclear how much of a reduction in pay that he’ll be taking.

Gomez says they’re open to discussion with different fighters if they’re willing to be “reasonable” with their payment requests.

Canelo Alvarez Sergiy Derevyanchenko

Canelo wants a top guy for September 12

“The top-ranked guys and a few champions that are out there,” said Golden Boy Promotions president Eric Gomez to Sky Sports. “If you look at Canelo’s career, he has always wanted to fight the best and it’s no different here, he still wants to fight the best.

“But some really good fighters are available to fight Canelo in September and that’s what we are working on now.

“We’re talking to him and presenting different ideas for him to be able to fight in September. It all depends on the negotiations. We are not living in the world that we lived in last year,” said Gomez on Canelo’s next fight.

It might be a miscalculation for Canelo to go cheap and pick John Ryder, Callum Smith, David Lemieux, or Anthony Dirrell.

There are a lot of fighters that fit the category of being top tier, but Canelo needs an opponent that will bring in subscribers to DAZN. That’s the most important thing. He can’t just select someone just based on economics.

If Canelo and his promoters at Golden Boy only think about saving every penny when it comes to negotiating a deal with a cheaper opponent, it won’t bring in the numbers DAZN needs.

Callum Smith is not a recognizable name with the casual boxing fans in the U.S., and he has a retiring personality. In other words, he won’t be able to attract interest in the Canelo fight for DAZN with his shy nature.

Derevyanchenko isn’t much better than Callum as far as being outgoing, but he’s better known to U.S. boxing fans. Also, Derevyanchenko is coming off his highly visible 12 round war with Gennadiy Golovkin last October. That fight was seen by many of DAZN’s subscribers, and it was one of the most exciting matches of 2019.

Sergiy Derevyanchenko = the ideal opponent for Alvarez

“Canelo Alvarez is searching for an opponent to fight on September 12,” said Chris Mannix on DAZN. “Two new names have been discussed as potential foes in the last two days in Canadian David Lemieux and John Ryder.

“They join previously discussed names Sergiy Derevyanchenko and Anthony Dirrell. Who is Canelo’s best option to fight in September?”

“I think at this time in the quarantine, Sergiy Derevyanchenko is your best bet,” said Sergio Mora to DAZN. “It’s a fight that can get made. Derevyanchenko is riding that wave, that momentum from the Gennadiy Golovkin fight in a battle that a lot of people felt he won.

“It was a close fight, and he was one of the first ones to hurt Gennadiy Golovkin to the body visibly. They’re both the same stature,” said Mora of Derevyanchenko and Canelo.

“They’re both around the same height and same reach. It’s a fight that can be made. Give me Derevyanchenko.,” said Mora.

“I’m with you on Sergiy Derevyanchenko,” said Mannix. “I think it is if you’re looking at a level of tiers of potential opponents, Derevyanchenko. If you’re looking at different tiers of opponents, Sergiy Derevyanchenko is at a significantly higher tier in my mind than any of the other fighters [under consideration for Canelo’s September 12 match],” said Mannix.

Right now, Derevyanchenko is the gold standard for what Canelo and Golden Boy need for his next fight. Canelo vs. Derevyanchenko would get the hardcore boxing fans excited, and that would lead to the casuals following.

You won’t get the same reaction from fans if Canelo elects to face one of the other names being considered. Canelo could attract a lot of interest if he took a significant risk and fought one of these fighters:

  • Artur Beterbiev
  • Dmitry Bivol
  • David Benavidez
  • Caleb Plant

Canelo’s other options aren’t so good

“David Lemieux, at one point, was a pretty impressive contender slash champion, but that was five years ago,” continued Mannix. “Since then, he’s had trouble making weight; he’s had problems with injuries. He can’t be relied on for Canelo in a fight in September.

“Anthony Dirrell had a nice run, but he’s 36, and in his last fight, he was beaten down by David Benavidez. Derevyanchenko, to me, is the answer to a lot of the problems here. I think Derevyanchenko still wants that fight.

“There’s been a lot of talk about a fight between Derevyanchenko and Jermall Charlo. I’ve been told that fight is this close to being signed. They are two PBC affiliated fighters, and they can get that deal done very quickly if Derevyanchenko agrees.

“I think Derevyanchenko wants to fight Canelo. So if there’s any possible way of sweetening the offer to make it worth Derevyanchenko’s while, I think you do it, because I believe Derevyanchenko against Canelo is a terrific fight.

“I think Derevyanchenko ultimately gets knocked out, but I think he’s going to be a worthy challenger, who is going to be entertaining in the ring,” said Mannix.

Some of the names that are being mentioned as possible opponents are for Canelo aren’t going to move the need. These are the names that won’t do much for Canelo:

  • Callum Smith
  • John Ryder
  • Anthony Dirrell
  • David Lemieux

WBA Super World 168-lb champion Callum Smith (27-0, 19 KOs) is the best of that bad bunch, but he’s from the U.K., and there are travel restrictions in place. Getting Callum over to the U.S. won’t be easy, and it might not be worth the trouble.

Money solves everything

“Sweetening the deal, meaning that you’ve got bring more to the table,” said Mora about Golden Boy Promotions needing to give Derevyanchenko a big enough offer for him to accept it.

“Money solves everything. Money solves the problem. Derevyanchenko has been cashing in, not only in the Golovkin fight and the Jacobs fight, but now he’s the man that everybody needs, and we want and is willing to take this fight during this quarantine in an arena that’s not packed. Pay the man, that’s what we need,” said Mora.

If Canelo takes a cut in pay, he could use that MoneyMoney to pay to get Derevyanchenko.

Derevyanchenko wants the Canelo fight, but he won’t take it if the offer is less than what he can get in challenging WBC middleweight champion Jermall Charlo. He’s already received an offer to face him, and it’s an easy fight to make, given that both guys are with PBC.

Whether Canelo gets a good opponent like Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 K.O.s) or a lesser guy will depend on the Money. Golden Boy Promotions won’t be in the same financial situation for Canelo’s September 12 contest compared to in the past. They won’t have a live audience of thousands of ticket buyers at his next fight in Las Vegas, Nevada. Without that Money, it ties Golden Boys’ hands, limiting how much they can pay Canelo’s opponent.

Additionally, it impacts the type of fights Golden Boy can assemble for Canelo’s undercard. What that almost certainly means is that Ryan Garcia probably won’t be fighting on Canelo’s undercard on September 12, even though it would be the perfect way for Golden Boy to increase his popularity.


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