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David Benavidez vs. Ronald Ellis – Preview

David Benavidez

By Sean Jones: David Benavidez returns tonight against Ronald Ellis in a WBC 168-lb title eliminator to decide champion Canelo Alvarez’s mandatory challenger. Benavidez – Ellis will be headlining on Showtime from the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Conn.

The former WBC super middleweight champion Benavidez (23-0, 20 KOs) sees the 31-year-old Ellis (18-1-2, 12 KOs) as just a stop-gap opponent for him on his way to bigger and better things, be it against Jermall Charlo, Caleb Plant, or preferably Canelo.

The former two-time WBC super middleweight champion Benavidez’s chances of getting any of those three to fight him in 2021 are nonexistent, which is why he’s going to have to look for another option for his next fight.

Bigger fights being targeted

The fights that Benavidez wants against Canelo, Jermall Charlo, and Caleb Plant will need to wait because they’re not going to happen this year. Benavidez says he’ll be moving up to 175 in two years, and he may move up without fighting any of them.

David Benavidez

‘El Bandera Roja’ Benavidez last fought on August 15th, stopping Roamer Alexis Angulo in the 10th round. Unfortunately, Benavidez lost his WBC 168lb title on the scales after coming in over the limit.

Although he easily beat Angulo, Benavidez’s victory was tarnished because of him losing his title. If Benavidez had made weight, he would be fighting Canelo right now and making millions. With the chance of beating the superstar.

Of course, Benavidez believes Canelo would want no part of fighting him if he still had his WBC belt, and he could be right.

Canelo never asked for a fight against Benavidez during the three years he held the WBC belt from 2017 to 2020; why would things change if he still had it?

Benavidez’s opponent Ellis is ranked #8 with the World Boxing Council, and these are his best career wins:

  •  Immanuwel Aleem
  • Matt Korobov

Both of those victories for the 10-year professional Ellis came in his last two fights in 2019 and 2020.

Benavidez says he’s going to use pressure to walk Ellis down and wear him down to get a stoppage. He’s going to fight, Ellis, in the same way he’s done with his past opponents, and he doesn’t see any reason to change things up.

Ellis = stay busy fight for Benavidez

“I’m fighting Ronald Ellis,” said Benavidez. “No disrespect to Ronald Ellis; he’s not a big name. I prepared for him like he’s a world champion. I was on weight a week before. Imagine how much motivation I’d have with Canelo.

David Benavidez

“What I got from that fight is I stopped a fighter that nobody has ever fought, and nobody has ever hurt,” Benavidez said about his last opponent Roamer Alexis Angulo.

“He’s a tough guy; he almost dropped Zurdo Ramirez twice. I went in there, and I made him quit. He said himself he couldn’t continue in round 10, so I gained that. But obviously, it was a bitter-sweet victory because I lost my title.

“What I learned from that fight is I can hurt whoever. It doesn’t matter if they’re slick, they’re stocky, or if they move around. I’m going to find that sweet spot one way or another,” Benavidez said.

It’s important that Benavidez, 24, not overlook the 31-year-old Ellis because he has everything to lose in this fight. A defeat against Ellis will likely permanently ruin his chances of fighting the big three at 168 in Canelo, Plant, and Charlo.

This fight is the equivalent of the Super Bowl for Ellis because it would open up opportunities for him to get big money matches against the likes of Canelo and Plant.

Benavidez eyeing Charlo bout

“The fans want to see me get tested, and I want to get tested myself,” said Benavidez to SI Boxing with Chris Mannix. “I want to see what I can do myself. Not just the fans, but to see myself as the best. I want that title, and I want that respect.

“If a young kid is calling you out and you think you’re a lion, what does it matter if a 24-year-old calls you out?” said Benavidez about Jermall Charlo saying that he needs to be 25 and vaccinated before he’ll fight him.

“If you look at our careers, we’re basically the same,” said Benavidez of Charlo. “We haven’t really fought anybody with a big name.

“So for him to think he’s the big bad wolf. He’s saying that for a reason because he’s scared. He wants to make it seem like he doesn’t want to punish me. I know deep down inside, I know he’s scared.

“Yeah, I want to make it happen after this fight,” Benavidez said about a match between him and Jermall. “I want to take care of Ronald Ellis.  I’m going to talk to the people I need to talk to to try and make that fight happen because it makes sense.

“Jermall Charlo is 30-years-old, I’m 24-years-old. We’re both in the same promotional company. PBC and Promotional Boxing Champions, we need a big fight; we need a big pay-per-view fight. Why wouldn’t we do it?

“There’s no one to fight at 160. There’s no one else for him to fight at 160, so why not fight me?

“I feel like since they’re giving everybody interim titles now, why not give me and Charlo an interim title, and the winner fights Canelo,” said Benavidez.

It’s entirely possible that Charlo is afraid of fighting Benavidez, so that’s why we’re not going to see that fight happen. Charlo seems very content, earning good money fighting weak opposition as the WBC middleweight champion.

I don’t think Charlo is overly ambitious, which he would need to be for him to go up to 168 to take on Benavidez.

Likely, Charlo won’t bother fighting Benavidez until after losing his WBC title in a few years and is on skidrow, desperate for a fight. In other words, by the time Benavidez is finally in the position to face Charlo, it will no longer be worth it because he’ll be on the downside of his career with nothing to offer him.


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