By Sean Jones: Canelo Alvarez says he’s open to fighting David Benavidez in “the future,” but he’s not saying when. When fans hear Canelo talk about fighting Benavidez ‘one of these days,’ they see that as code to mean he’s NEVER going to fight. It’s just double talk by Alvarez. In “the future,” = it’s never going to happen.
Benavidez (27-0, 23 KOs) has been pushing for that fight for the last four years, and it’s got to happen soon because Canelo (59-2-2, 39 KOs) is showing advanced signs of being washed up.
Canelo will defend his undisputed super middleweight championship against 154-pounder Jermell Charlo on September 30th.
f Canelo looks bad in losing to Jermell, it’s safe to say that he won’t bother fighting Benavidez before retiring.
Losing to Jermell could be the last straw because there wouldn’t be a built-in excuse like there was when Canelo was schooled by WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol last year in May.
Canelo had a dual excuse for why he lost to Bivol, blaming it on fighting out of his weight class at 175 and a left wrist injury. That’s one of the reasons Bivol wanted a rematch with Canelo at 168: he didn’t want his victory discredited by the boxing fans, and he wanted to take away Alvarez’s ability to explain away his defeat.
Canelo has now forgotten Bivol, and it’s clear that the Mexican star is fine with not trying to avenge his loss. Bivol saying he wanted to come down to 168 was the rationale that Canelo needed to not fight him ever again.
“Yeah, why not? Maybe in the future. He talks too much; that’s not the way to make a fight. I don’t pay attention. I do my thing. Just watch, watch my career, watch his career. I’ve done a lot in boxing,” Canelo Alvarez said to SportsRadio810 about a fight with David Benavidez.
“I never thought about it. They said that the other Charlo was not ready and that they wanted [Jermell] Charlo. I said, ‘Okay, bring whatever, I don’t care.’”
The way that Canelo labored in his last two fights to beat John Ryder & 41-year-old Gennadiy Golovkin, he needs to fight Benavidez or David Morrell Jr as soon as possible because he’s going to be totally shot if he waits until 2025 to fight him.
Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn is talking up the possibility of Canelo fighting Edgar Berlanga in 2024. If Canelo takes next May & Errol Spence in September 2024, it means that the earliest that he would be free to fight Benavidez would be in May 2025.
Canelo has been playing a lot of golf lately, and it might be impossible to keep him around boxing long enough for him to fight Benavidez. If Canelo does stay around, he could focus on fighting smaller guys to give himself an advantage. Pulling up welterweights to 168 will give Canelo a massive size advantage.
Santa Cruz gives Jermell a good chance against Canelo
“A lot of chance. He’s really great,” said Leo Santa Cruz to Fighthype when asked what chance he gives Jermell Charlo to beat Canelo. “The only thing is if Canelo catches him, I think he’ll knock him out.
“If it goes to a decision, I think Charlo. He’s got to box, throw combinations, move, and stay out of his reach. He does [have a good jab].
“He’s got to focus on boxing, stay on the outside, and not get caught with those big punches. Pick them and right away move. Don’t let Canelo come back,” said Santa Cruz about Jermell needing to pick his spots to land and then get out of the way.