Bernard Hopkins says Jermall Charlo is a dangerous fight for Canelo Alvarez

By Boxing News - 12/25/2020 - Comments

By Jeff Aronow: Bernard Hopkins of Golden Boy Promotions wants to see Canelo Alvarez face a dangerous threat for him in Jermall Charlo, and he believes this would be a huge fight for the sport of boxing.

Although Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) is no longer with Golden Boy, Hopkins has no hard feelings about it. He just wants to see Canelo in the biggest fights possible, be it Jermall (31-0, 22 KOs) or the top fighters at 168 and 175.

Charlo must move up to 168

Hopkins feels that WBC middleweight champion Charlo would give Canelo problems with his power jab, ring IQ, and talent. Unfortunately, Charlo, 30, isn’t in the position to face Canelo because he’s fighting at 160, whereas the Mexican star is competing at 168 now.

For Charlo to increase his chances of meeting Canelo inside the ring, he’s going to need to vacate his WBC 160lb title and move up to 168 soon. The longer Charlo delays the move up in weight, the more it decreases the chance of him ever fighting Alvarez.

Charlo recently defeated Sergiy Derevyanchenko by a 12 round unanimous decision on September 26th ina fight on Showtime pay-per-view. For his part, Canelo beat WBA super-middleweight champion, Callum Smith by a 12 round unanimous decision last Saturday.

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Jermall Charlo is a dangerous threat to Canelo

“Even though it wasn’t the type of performance we’d seen from Canelo before that, that’s why he wanted to get the rust off and be active as soon as possible,” said Hopkins to Fighthub about Alvarez’s win over Callum Smith.

“Jermall, Charlo brother,” Hopkins said when asked who out there could give Canelo problems. It’s a dangerous fight for Canelo. Hungry talent, more than one position that is Jermall.

Image: Bernard Hopkins says Jermall Charlo is a dangerous fight for Canelo Alvarez

“He won a big fight, and Canelo cannot start slow against guys like that. You can’t start slow and walk them down. They get too far ahead, and it’s like a station wagon trying to catch a Ferrari.

“It’s not going to happen. There are so many good fights for Canelo. That whole 60 and 68, and even 75, which he already went up there and did.

“He already covered three divisions, but the two he can cover, 68 and 75, are more realistic than cutting down that weight.

“You start hitting your 30s and cutting down to 160s. You might do it a couple of times, but if you do it against opponents like Jermall and some other dangerous names out there that I don’t see as much as those threats like Jermall. Then you start fighting against yourself.

“You start cutting against your own self. That’s when that little edge, you forfeit, you actually give that up. So, that’s a fight that I would like to see Canelo fight,” said Bernard.

The belief that fans in the boxing world have is Canelo, 30, wants no part of Jermall. It’s easy to understand why people believe that Canelo is avoiding Charlo, as he never mentions his name.

Canelo decided to give up his WBC title and accept the Franchise title when Charlo was his mandatory challenger, which was seen as a pure duck on Alvarez’s part. If Canelo were interested in facing Charlo, he would have kept his WBC title and defended against him.

Charlo vs. Canelo similar to Leonard vs. Duran I

“If it’s anywhere between 60 and 68, I’d like to see Charlo and Canelo get it one,” said Hopkins. “That’s a big fight. His [Jermall] pressure style, and his whole IQ. I call it a shotgun jab, and it’s powerful and it’s fast.

“It’s not just one. He shoots out like a piston, and that can get your attention. His [Jermall] style of fighting, and Canelo’s style of fighting is more of an aggressive counter puncher.

Image: Bernard Hopkins says Jermall Charlo is a dangerous fight for Canelo Alvarez

“It’s a little bit more of a making you miss and making you pay. He learned that the hard way [against Floyd Mayweather], and he look the ‘L’ and you know where he learned that from.

“He got more advanced with it, and got more skillful with it. So that is a plus for him.

“When you put that energy together [between Jermall and Canelo], you’re talking Roberto Duran and Sugar Ray Leonard. I look at that as a modern-day Sugar Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran first fight,” said Hopkins.

Bernard is a little off in comparing Canelo vs. Charlo to Leonard vs. Duran 1. The first fight between Duran and Leonard was a slugfest fought at close quarters in June 1980 in Montreal, Canadia.

Canelo would likely box Charlo rather than stand and slug the way a brave Sugar Ray Leonard did against Duran.

Hopkins gives Canelo a B+ for win over Callum Smith

“If I was giving him a report card, I’d say B+. He’s not 21, he’s not Ryan [Garcia], he’s not 21 anymore, he’s not 22 anymore; he’s in his 30s,” said Hopkins.

“Time goes fast. The fights that are lined up for him, he’s going to be in a lot of super fights before he’s done,” Hopkins said about Canelo.

Image: Bernard Hopkins says Jermall Charlo is a dangerous fight for Canelo Alvarez

“He’s going to be in some major fights, I believe. This was to get the dust off your back that he desperately wanted.

“Now that he got that out of the way, look for Canelo to fight before Cinco de Mayo [May 2021]. I don’t see him sitting around for four or five months after that good performance, getting that dust off his back.

“He got some rounds in, and he had a durable guy. It was a guy [Callum Smith] that had no chance of beating him, but I think it’s better than sparring in the ring,” said Hopkin.

Canelo looked pretty good against Callum Smith, but it wasn’t the type of exciting performance we saw in his two fights against Gennadiy Golovkin.

It would have been a better fight if Callum had more talent, but he looked like an over-matched fighter that was out of his depth in facing Alvarez.

As Hopkins says, Canelo had a good fight to get the rust out of his system, but that’s about it. He wasn’t facing a guy that was a threat to him, like Jemall Charlo, Artur Beterbiev, or Dimitry Bivol.