Tony Bellew: Callum Smith can knockout Canelo Alvarez
By Dan Ambrose: Tony Bellew is leaning towards Callum Smith, knocking out Canelo Alvarez if the two fight in December. The unbeaten 6’4″ Smith (27-0, 19 KOs) is now back in the frame with the news of Canelo (53-1-2, 36 KOs) leaving Golden Boy Promotions.
If Canelo takes this fight with Smith, he could regret it. Bellew is banking on Smith knocking out Canelo when that fight happens, which would be a big shock to the boxing world.
The result of Canelo continually fighting guys that are much larger than him is him getting knocked out sooner or later. In going up against Smith, it’s the equivalent of Canelo stirring up a wasp nest with a stick and getting stung repeatedly as he attempts to flee on his Babe Ruth-like pipestem legs.
Suddenly, Canelo, 30, is now in the position to fight guys that he would have never fought before had he stayed with Golden Boy and DAZN.
Negotiations are still underway between Canelo’s manager Eddy Reynoso and WBA super-middleweight champion Smith’s promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing for December 18th/19th.
The former WBO cruiserweight champion Bellew has analyzed Canelo’s fighting style, and he sees the hard-hitting Smith as potentially knocking him out. Bellew believes Smith can beat Canelo on the inside or outside.
It’s up to him whichever he wants to do it, but Bellew feels that Smith would have an easier time using his jab to box the shorter 5’8″ Canelo from the outside.
Canelo will be shocked by Callum Smith’s strength
“Canelo is now in the driver’s seat, and it shows all along that he wants to fight everyone and anyone. He wants the best,” said Tony Bellew to IFL TV. Canelo is used to walking fighters down.
“What he’s not used to is someone bullying him. I don’t think he’s ever been bullied. Callum is 6’4″ and is happy to mix it on the inside, but if he puts Canelo on the jab and has the tools and skills to do that, it makes it a hard job for Canelo.
“It’s a brilliant fight. If anyone is going to do Canelo, it’s Callum Smith. I think Callum Smith has every opportunity to knock Canelo out, I really do. Canelo will have the shock of his life when he feels the strength of Callum Smith.
Callum will need to do a better job landing his shots against Canelo compared to what he did in his last match against John Ryder in November of 2019. Smith was barely missing the entire 12-round fight, and Ryder did a good job of smothering his power by staying close.
Callum will take punishment against Alvarez
“It also shows that Oscar De La Hoya was pretty careful in matching him when they were in control because they didn’t want no part of Callum Smith,” said Bellew. “Now all of a sudden, Callum Smith is back in the frame and closer than he’s ever been before.
“To beat Canelo, Callum Smith will approach it with a completely different game plan than what Billy [Joe Saunders] will approach it with,” Bellew said when asked if Callum has a better shot at beating Canelo than Saunders.
“It’ll be a more damaging fight for Callum Smith if he came through it than it would for Billy Joe. Their both undefeated, but we don’t know how good either of them is. Callum Smith has got height, size, and reach, and he’s a brilliant body puncher,” said Bellew.
It stands to reason that if Smith brawls with Canelo, he’ll take a lot of punishment.
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