Canelo looking past Ryder, wants Bivol rematch

By Boxing News - 04/26/2023 - Comments

By Sean Jones: Canelo Alvarez is already looking past his fight with John Ryder on May 6th towards his rematch with Dmitry Bivol in September.

That humiliating loss that Canelo (58-2-1, 39 KOs) suffered last May against WBA light heavyweight champion Bivol has etched a painful memory into the Mexican star’s mind that can only be erased by avenging it.

Unfortunately for Canelo, he still has to deal with the upset-minded Ryder (32-5, 18 KOs), who sees this fight as the biggest one of his career and will be super motivated.

With Canelo distracted by his obsession to avenge his loss to the talented Bivol, there’s no way that he can fully concentrate on Ryder. He can’t focus on Ryder because he’s still haunted by the image of what Bivol did to him last May.

Canelo looking beyond Ryder

He wants to win this fight and then go after Bivol,” said Oscar Valdez to Fight Hub TV about Canelo Alvarez wanting to defeat John Ryder and then face Dmitry Bivol in September.

“Canelo is focused on one thing only. He doesn’t mention anything else, but he mentions Bivol,” Valdez continued. “He wants to beat Bivol. After his losing to Bivol, something sparked in him and brought that animal back in him.

“Every day he’s working hard, and you see it. He’s looking in great shape with the speed. He’s always had that defense, but you can tell his mindset is different right now,” said Valdez.

“I’ve seen Ryder, and he’s been something of an enigma. A really talented guy, and showed flashes of having a great future and then getting beaten by some random guy that he had no business getting beaten by,” said Paulie Malignaggi to Probox TV about John Ryder.

“You could see that he had talent, but he was never going to get over the hump. You always saw that he had the potential boxing. You saw him coming up short, and you thought, ‘This guy is going to be great.’ Then all of a sudden, he gets beat by some guy you never heard of.

“Then the Callum Smith fight happened where he didn’t get the decision, but you saw some of that potential on a higher stage.  It was no fluke. What I saw from this guy early on is there; it just has to be there more consistently,” said Malignaggi.

“Recently, it has been. He beats the likes of Danny Jacobs, and then he gets a fight with Zach Parker, who he wasn’t supposed to beat but does. Granted, he gets it on a hand injury, but whatever,” said Chris Algieri about Ryder.

“He gets the win and moves on, and now he’s getting the fight with Canelo Alvarez. So, I think he’s gotten over the hump. He’s shown himself to be a capable of fighter, but he’s able to win those fights that he needs to win in order to move on, and there’s no better moving on than to fight Canelo Alvarez.”

Ryder has got the golden ticket

“The golden ticket to ride the money train. Yes, because he’s the most expensive guy to fight,” said Algieri when asked, ‘Is Canelo still the face of boxing?’

“I think he is too because just because you’re the ‘face of boxing’ doesn’t mean you’re the best in boxing,” said Malignaggi. “A lot of times, fans want to make those things mutually exclusive, but they’re not.

“You can be the most recognizable person in boxing but not always be the best. You can be among the most famous in boxing and not be among the best. Arturo Gatti wasn’t among the best, but he was certainly good enough to get the recognition and exciting enough to become really popular.

“Honestly, look at the WWE model. These guys get beat and win every week. I know it’s staged, but you build up a brand recognition is what I’m saying to get there,” said Malignaggi.

“The UFC has real fighters,” said Algieri.

“Don’t get me started because their biggest star [Conor McGregor] hasn’t won a fight in six years. Unfortunately, those aren’t staged,” said Malignaggi.

“He beat guys he wasn’t supposed to beat,” said Algieri when asked what Ryder did to get the Canelo fight. “Against Zach Parker, he was probably coming into the fight as an underdog. Danny Jacobs, he was going in as the underdog.

“He wins those fights, and now you’re here. Danny Jacobs fought Canelo a couple of years ago. Trying to compare him to Avni Yildirim. No way. This guy deserves to be here and deserves a shot, and I’m happy he got it,” said Algieri about Ryder.

“I think also, he’s a guy that is coming into his own at the right time,” said Malignaggi. “As Chris said, he’s a guy that is starting to get those recognizable wins, those recognizable results that I’d seen earlier in his career when I thought, this guy was capable of.

“Sometimes, you have a shorter prime, and people don’t see it, and then you kind of fade out. I think Yildirim was one of those guys. I saw Yildirim earlier in his career.

“He was running through people. By the time he got to Canelo, he looked like a guy they’d picked up off the street because that kind of style wears you out if you fight that kind of style all the time.”

Will ‘The Gorilla’ handle the pressure?

“Ryder likes to be in the mix. They call him ‘The Gorilla.’ There’s a lot of technique to what he does, and in some ways, he has that intelligence. Now can he handle the pressure of a Canelo fight? That’s another story. I don’t know. This is in Mexico,” said Malignaggi.

“This is going to be like fighting on Canelo’s couch,” said Algieri about Ryder fighting Canelo in Guadalajara, Mexico.

“First of all, I don’t know if you can get a decision there, even if you pull it off,” said Malignaggi. “You got to worry about if you do too good that the ring doesn’t get stormed. They’re rowdy over there.

“Even in Texas. When I was told about Chavez and Whitaker. Whitaker could not get that decision. That’s why it was a draw. There was a threat that the judges wouldn’t have got out of the arena. Greg Haugen and Chavez.

“You’re not just fighting the guy in the ring, who was a world beater himself. You’re also fighting the situation that if you maybe hit this guy too much, you might get attacked by everyone. I’m sure it’s going to play in your mind,” said Malignaggi.

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