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David Benavidez on standby to face Canelo if Saunders pulls out for May 8th fight

Image: David Benavidez on standby to face Canelo if Saunders pulls out for May 8th fight

By Sean Jones: David Benavidez will be ready to step in as a replacement opponent within 24 hours’ notice to fight Canelo Alvarez on May 8th if his scheduled opponent Billy Joe Saunders pulls out with an injury or whatever.

The former two-time WBC super middleweight champion (24-0, 21 KOs) Benavidez is training now with the idea of stepping in to replace WBO 168-lb champion Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) if he comes up lame at any time during training camp, says Jose Benavidez Sr.

Jose reasons that the boxing public will want a good placement to face Canelo if Saunders goes down and Benavidez will be the ideal guy.

It’s a good thing that Benavidez’s dad Jose is making it known that he’ll step in because it will take away any excuses from Team Canelo if they replace Saunders with a weak opponent.

He wants Canelo to know that David will not turn down the fight if it’s offered to him at a week’s notice or even a day’s notice.

With Saunders’ track record of pulling out of fights with injuries, you can’t rule out the possibility of him coming up lame. The question is, will Canelo be willing to take Benavidez on short notice?

Canelo should be fighting the #1 & #2 guys

“He should fight the #1 or #2, but who’s going to make him do that?” said Jose Benavidez Sr to AKHi TV about Canelo Alvarez. “You tell me, or the people can tell me, comment.

Image: David Benavidez on standby to face Canelo if Saunders pulls out for May 8th fight

“Who’s going to make him do that if he doesn’t want to do it? He’s [Canelo] a Franchise fighter, and a Franchise fighter means you don’t have to fight nobody.

“To me, I don’t even understand; I’m confused. But if you want to make history and you want to be loved by the people, I think you got to fight the number ones, the number twos, and maybe the number three because you’re at that level.

“You got to show the people you are what you say you are and your team. He [Canelo] couldn’t even stop Julio Chavez Jr,” said Jose Benavidez.

Canelo is the shot-caller in boxing, so it’s easy for him to swerve guys like Benavidez, Jermall Charlo, Artur Beterbiev, Dimitry Bivol, and Demetrius Andrade.

Some boxing fans believe Canelo uses his mission to unify the 168-lb division as an excuse for taking easy fights because the champions are flawed.

It meant something to be a champion in the old days, but not in this era and not at 168. Callum Smith, Rocky Field, Caleb Plant, and Saunders are what you call ‘belt-holders.’

As a result, even if Canelo becomes the undisputed champion at super middleweight, he won’t have fought the #1 guy. Benavidez is arguably the top guy, and Edgar Berlanga #2.

Benavidez will be ready to replace Saunders

“In life, every day, there are opportunities,” said Benavidez Sr. “This is what David does. He’s staying disciplined, and you guys have seen it; he’s shown, you guys.

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“He wants those big fights. In order for him to get those big fights, they are going to come because these guys [Team Canelo] likes to call the people when they’re not ready or give you two weeks or a week’s notice or whatever, you know?

“We are going to train and stay focused, and if they give us a week notice or if they give me 24-hour notice, we’ll take that fight because I know we’ll be ready,” said Benavidez about David willing to step in to face Canelo if Saunders pulls out.

“We’re going to be ready. Anything can happen, and in my mind, these guys could get injured, somebody [Saunders] could get injured. They’re going to have to replace somebody.

“Who are they going to replace? Now the people want to see good fights. They’re not going to take just anybody.

“So they are going to try and take us. Okay, you want to take the fight, you have it.

“And if we’re not ready, they’re going to start, ‘Oh, I thought you wanted to fight. I thought you had balls.’ So you know what? We are ready 100%; we’re going to be ready,” said Benavidez.

It’s improbable that Canelo would use Benavidez as a replacement opponent if Saunders pulls out of the fight on an injury or illness. If Canelo does choose to stay on the May 8th date, he’d likely someone like Gabe Rosado or John Ryder.

It’s almost a given that Canelo would fight either of those two fighters rather than Benavidez. Why? It’s obvious why. Neither of those guys is a threat to beat Canelo in the way that Benavidez would be.

Tyson wants Canelo to stop hand-picking opponents

“Canelo has got to stop picking his own opponents, man,” said Mike Tyson on Hot Boxin. “He needs to be in there with the Charlos, he needs to fight both of them, and then he needs to fight Benavidez.

“He’s got to fight those two brothers and then fight Benavidez. If I were him, I would fight four times a year.

“The last guy he [Canelo] fought was soft,” said Tyson about Alvarez’s last fight against Avni Yildirim.

“I want to see him fight one of those guys. That tall guy [Benavidez], I love him. I think Canelo is too elusive for him.

“And I think that would be a good fight. I think he’s [Canelo] too strong, but that would be a good fight,” said Tyson about Alvarez fighting Jermall Charlo.

“This guy is f*** strong. He’s like an ox. He’d break that wall. It would be hard to beat him at middleweight.

“You’d have to fight him at 168. I’d like to see him [Benavidez] fight one of the Charlos. These guys should fight each other,” said Tyson.

It would be in Canelo’s best interest to give up fighting the weak champions at 168 and listen to Mike Tyson by facing the Charlo brothers and Benavidez. Those are the fights the fans want to see.

Canelo’s decision to unify the super middleweight division against Caleb Plant and Billy Joe Saunders is a personal goal that the fans aren’t motivated about. It’s something that they can’t relate to because they’re fans of Saunders and Plant.

Neither of those guys has huge fan bases, and people aren’t interested in seeing Canelo fight those guys.

The perception is that Canelo is using his goal of unifying the 168-lb division as an excuse for making easy money with DAZN by taking soft paper champions.

Canelo also didn’t have to defend his WBC Franchise super middleweight title against mandatory Avni Yildirim recently. As the Franchise champion, Canelo doesn’t have to make mandatory defenses.

He chose Yildirim, and it’s pretty to see why. The money was good, and the threat nonexistent for Canelo.

Benavidez Sr questions Canelo’s physique change

“So to me now, there are some questions to me. All of a sudden, he’s Superman,” Benavidez Sr said about Canelo. “I mean, he got caught with steroids [clenbuterol].

Image: David Benavidez on standby to face Canelo if Saunders pulls out for May 8th fight

“Now, he’s cut, and he does look strong. All those fighters in that stable [Eddy Reynoso] look like monsters now. Look at Oscar Valdez; he looks strong, man. He looked like an animal. I was impressed, but something is happening there, you know?

“Let me go back to what I was saying. He [Canelo] generates a lot of money, right? So, a little slap [on the hands]. ‘Don’t do it again.’

“With steroids or without steroids, I think David [Benavidez] is going to give fans a good fight [against Canelo Alvarez], and he is going to have problems.

“I’m not saying we’re going to beat him. We’re going to try to beat him. I got to give my respects to him [Canelo].

“He’s strong, and he’s disciplined, but at the same time, with steroids or without steroids, we are [ready to take the fight with Alvarez],” said Benavidez Sr.

Canelo testing positive for clenbuterol a couple of years ago was bad for his career, and his excuse about having eaten tainted beef in Mexico didn’t fly with a lot of fans.


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