Eddy Reynoso discusses Canelo – Yildirim, Saunders, and Plant fights

By Boxing News - 02/22/2021 - Comments

By Max Seitelman: Trainer Eddy Reynoso insists that boxing megastar Canelo Alvarez isn’t overlooking his opponent Avni Yildirim this Saturday night in their fight at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida.

DAZN will be streaming this fight along with an excellent undercard, highlighted by WBC flyweight champion Julio Cesar Martinez (17-1, 13 KOs) defeating against #1 ranked McWilliams Arroyo (20-4, 15 KOs) in a fight that could steal the thunder from the main event.

For all intents and purposes, this fight is a showcase match for Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) to get in an easy payday on DAZN while winning over new boxing fans by dominating a fighter that is levels below him in the department.

Reynoso will be working Canelo’s corner when he defends his WBA/WBC super middleweight title against his WBC mandatory Yildirim (21-2, 12 KOs) in a 12 round fight.

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Canelo has become the number one star in North America with Floyd Mayweather Jr’s retirement five years ago. It’s helped Canelo that Manny Pacquiao has been sitting inactive for close to two years since beating Keith Thurman in 2019.

The 5’11 1/2″ Yildirim looked like a giant standing next to the 5’8″ Canelo on Monday in their face-off in Miami.

The size difference between the two fighters will be considerable on Saturday night. It’s going to be interesting to see how Alvarez deals with this.

Canelo not overlooking Yildirim

“It’s a fight that’s mandatory. Therefore, we have to do that fight and then focus our attention on BJ Saunders,” said Eddy Reynoso to Little Giant Boxing on Canelo’s fight this Saturday night against Yildirim.

Image: Eddy Reynoso discusses Canelo - Yildirim, Saunders, and Plant fights


(Photo credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom)

“Canelo is on the level where he has to impose. I wouldn’t say easy because each fight is different. We did a tremendous job in camp. Yes, these are the most dangerous fights because we have nothing to win and a lot to lose.

“The biggest tragedies in sports are these types of fights. For example, there’s Frankie Randall vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. There are fighters that have lost 10-round tune-up fights.

It’s challenging to say you have an easy fight. Sometimes the fight you think is going to be hard turns out to be the easiest and vise versa. We’re not overconfident. We’re working hard as always,” said Reynoso.

There’s a definite size advantage that Yildirim will have in this fight, and it’s going to be up to Canelo to find a way around that.

Canelo can’t count on Yildirim fighting passively like his last opponent Callum Smith, who showed no interest in going to war with him.

Yildirim’s trainer Joel Diaz understands that they’re not going to get a decision against boxing’s #1 star Canelo, so he’s going to have Avni attacking him relentlessly on Saturday night.

Yildirim and Canelo are familiar with each other from the two weeks that Avni worked for the Mexican star as a sparring partner to prepare him for his rematch with Gennadiy Golovkin.

Saunders and Plant await Canelo

“I think he’s right. Fighting the best fighter in the world will push you to do everything right,” Reynoso said about Billy Joe Saunders, saying he’ll work really hard in training camp to prepare himself for Canelo. “Saunders knows he elevates his status in boxing if he wins.

Image: Eddy Reynoso discusses Canelo - Yildirim, Saunders, and Plant fights


“Caleb Plant is an excellent boxer; I really like his style,” said Reynoso about the IBF super middleweight champion. “It’s the style that fulfills me in boxing. He’s a brilliant fighter in the ring with a lot of qualities.

“He has good footwork, good defense, and feints. He has good boxing skills. I think what’s missing from him is a little more power. He’s an excellent boxer, and he’s a champion for a reason.

“I’m hoping we win the two fights lined up to negotiate then the fight with Calen Plant to try and do what no Mexican has done.

Canelo wants to unify

“Those are the goals we put on ourselves last year; it’s a project we have, which is to make Canelo the first Mexican to unify all the titles [at super middleweight],” said Reynoso.

“Be on the shortlist of fighters to do that, and be the first fighter to unify all the titles at 168. They are projects that we know will cost us, but that’s why we’re working.

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“We have the fight lined up with Saunders [in May]. But first, we have to beat Yildrim and then look for the Caleb Plant fight.

“Yes, he was helping us out for two weeks,” said Reynoso about Yildirim having worked with Canelo as a sparring partner in the past.

“He’s a strong fighter with nice power, he’s brave, he’s young, and he hasn’t taken punishment. He has an opportunity of a lifetime, and he’s not going to let it go to waste,” said Reynoso.

In his attempt to unify the 168-lb division, the time spent for Canelo is using up a lot of time in his career, and you wonder if it’s really worth it.

The kudos that Canelo will get by becoming the first undisputed Mexican super middleweight champion pale at what he could accomplish if he were to take on fighters that the boxing public wants to see him fight.

What Canelo is attempting to do in unifying the 168lb division will go over the heads of most boxing fans, who don’t pay attention to all the titles.

What fans want to see is fights between Canelo and fighters that intrigue them, and unfortunately, the two last belt holders that Alvarez must fight to unify aren’t popular.