Canelo Alvarez considering Callum Smith, Billy Joe Saunders, and Caleb Plant for Dec.19th
By Sean Jones: Canelo Alvarez has added Billy Joe Saunders and Callum Smith in addition to Caleb Plant for his December 19th fight. The decision on Canelo’s opponent for December will come down to the negotiations, according to ESPN Deportes.
Alvarez (53-1-2 36 KOs) legally ended his contract with Golden Boy Promotions and DAZN this month after fighting three of the eleventh fights of his $365 million contract. Canelo had been with DAZN since 2018 and Golden Boy since 2010.
It was initially believed that IBF super-middleweight champion Plant (20-0, 12 KOs), but now Saunders (29-0, 14 KOs) and Smith (27-0, 19 KOs).
It’s tricky if Canelo fights Saunders or Smith, as he would be back on DAZN. Those wouldn’t be pay-per-view fights if he fought Billy Joe or Smith.
For Canelo to be considering Saunders or Smith, it could mean that there’s concern about the risk involved in taking on the highly skilled Plant. The 6’1″ Plant is a bad match-up for the 5’8″ Canelo due to his size, boxing skills, and power.
Plant, Saunders, and Smith options for Canelo in December
“GGG was always the fight that DAZN wanted and couldn’t land,” Hearn said to Boxing Social about Canelo vs. Golovkin. “Therefore, they found themselves in that position, but I don’t know what Canelo wants to do.
“I think he wants to fight in December. Myself and everybody else have had a conversation with [Canelo’s manager] Eddy Reynoso, and we’ll pitch like everybody else.
“And I think he’s made it quite clear that whether to jump into anything now, it’s just, ‘Who’s got what for December?’ and we’ll move on to the next one.
“So in that respect, we’ll [DAZN] be in a good position because we do have the biggest budget on boxing, but we just got to make it count when we spend that type of money.
“I’m speaking with Eddy, and Eddy wants to fight Billy Joe Saunders, Callum Smith, Caleb Plant, and Gennady Golovkin,” Hearn said about Canelo’s manager Reynoso.
“Three of those [Saunders, Golovkin, and Callum] are with DAZN, and the other [Plant] is with PBC. Nothing changes. Canelo still wants to fight Billy Joe, Callum, and Gennadiy. We’ve just got to make sure the deal is right,” said Hearn.
Eddie is hoping that Canelo picks one of his fighters, Callum or Saunders, but it might be too early for him to go in that direction.
With Canelo just recently severing ties with DAZN, it’s wishful thinking on Hearn’s part for him to hope that he’ll pick Saunders or Callum Smith for his December 19th fight.
Canelo needs an opponent that he can sell on pay-per-view, and he can’t do that if he chooses Billy Joe or Smith.
Hearn believes Canelo will fight on DAZN next
“It takes a huge cost away from them,” Hearn said on Canelo, leaving DAZN. “Canelo Alvarez is one of the biggest stars in the sport, and he did drive a number of subscribers to DAZN.
“The good news for DAZN is that money is not looking to be kept. That money is looking to be invested in boxing.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if Canelo fights on DAZN next, and I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if he boxes on DAZN in May against GGG.
“Financially, that’s the biggest fight out there. I think Canelo is doing it smart right now. He’s coming off of a bad relationship he was in, and he’s just saying, ‘I’m going to take my time, go fight by fight, everybody let me know what you’ve got, and I’ll make my decision.’
“That’s a strong position for DAZN, which has a significant budget to attract huge fights. But they only want certain fights, which is where the argument stems from the approval of what’s acceptable and what’s not,” Hearn said.
It would be a real surprise to a lot of boxing fans if Canelo chooses to fight one of Hearn’s DAZN fighters next. For Canelo to go in that direction, it would send a strong signal that he doesn’t fancy a fight against Plant, who has amazing boxing skills.
Canelo has his work cut out for him now that he’s a promotional free agent because he’s not picking a good time to return to pay-per-view.
If the pandemic weren’t going on, it would still be difficult because only a handful of fighters are popular enough for Canelo to fight on PPV. Saunders and Smith aren’t big enough names in the U.S to fight on pay-per-view.
Golovkin wants to fight Canelo in May
I don’t think there’s any love lost because of Gennadiy and Canelo, especially over the last year,” Hearn said.
“That’s the fight. We all wanted to move forward to that fight, but it couldn’t be delivered. So he’s [Gennadiy] still fighting [Kamil] Szeremeta, that’s his next fight.
“It’s a record-breaking defense, and then he wants to fight Canelo Alvarez in May. I think that fight will happen, I really do. It’s the biggest fight out there for both.
“I don’t see any reason. I’ll open up Callum Smith, Billy Joe Saunders, Demetrius Andrade, and Jaime Munguia,” Hearn said of Golovkin. “Those are the kinds of fight for Gennadiy Golovkin if he can’t get Canelo Alvarez in May.
“I think if Canelo comes out next week and says, ‘I’m signing a five-fight deal or FOX, then, of course. That fight is untouchable for those guys if they stay on the DAZN platform.
“But he’s [Canelo] not going to do that. He’s going to look for the best option in a fight by fight basis, and I know he wants to fight our guys, and our guys want to fight him.
“For Gennadiy, it opens up a lot of [opportunities]. But Gennadiy has never been solely focused on Canelo Alvarez. He wants to make history with his record-breaking defense against Szeremeta, and then he wants to challenge himself.
“I’d love to see Gennadiy Golovkin in with Demetrius Andrade. No one else will fight Andrade. So will Gennadiy do it? Jaime Munguia gainst GGG is a massive fight.
“Callum Smith and Billy Joe Saunders in the UK are massive opportunities for him. Let’s get this record-breaking fight [against Szeremeta] and then move on,” said Hearn.
It’s a long shot for Canelo to fight Golovkin in May on DAZN as well because he hasn’t shown interest in facing GGG since 2018. If Canelo wanted to fight Golovkin, he would have done it while he was still under contract with DAZN, and maybe things wouldn’t have ended up the way they did.
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