Canelo Alvarez May Face Callum Smith or John Ryder Next
As his coveted Mexican Independence fight date in September rapidly approaches, WBA middleweight & “regular super middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KO’s) still has no dance partner.
Initially, WBO super middleweight champion “Superb” Billy Joe Saunders (29-0, 14 KO’s) had the “Golden Ticket.”
This was before he pulled the rug from beneath the prizefight. He recently announced he would not be able to properly prepare by a September date. The unforeseen predicament left Team Alvarez scrambling to find a new opponent.
POSSIBLE UK IMPORTS
Golden Boy Promotions is now mulling over a pair of potential opponents. WBA champion Callum “Mundo” Smith (27-0, 19 KO’s) and John “The Gorilla” Ryder (28-5, 16 KO’s) are at the top of the list. There were talks of Smith facing Alvarez earlier this year but those negotiations suddenly went cold.
With Saunders out of the way, Mundo has resumed his strategic position to get the bout. However, one major hurdle is getting either fighter across the ocean and into the US. With the current travel restrictions put in place, there is no guarantee this task can be accomplished.
Nevertheless, when directly asked by Sky Sports, president of Golden Boy Promotions, Eric Gomez, did confirm both men were solid candidates.
“There is a very good chance.”
Smith won a tough mandatory defense against Ryder in November 2019. Although, many fans felt the challenger did enough to become the new champion. This, besides remaining within the top ten rankings by the WBA, could have contributed Ryder being considered a worthy opponent.
LESS MONEY, MORE PROBLEMS!
While listing who and where certain opposition may come from, Gomez explained how it would be preferable to sign with someone already in the states. Along, with the added complications of dealing with international travel, he also spoke on the “elephant in the room” being the looming pay cut that both fighters will have to take.
“It’s more difficult now because of the restrictions. The borders are not all open so it isn’t easy to bring some fighters to the US. It all depends on the negotiations.
“We are not living in the world that we lived in last year. Canelo will be taking a significant pay-cut. It depends on the negotiations. Anybody willing to come to the table and be reasonable, he will fight.
“We are not discarding any of the top guys.”
Clearly times are hard when a boxing powerhouse such as Canelo is going through all this rigmarole to find an opponent! It will be interesting to see who they select, if anyone at all.
With the September date just two months away there appears to be a high likelihood the fight slot goes unused.
In the states, there is WBC middleweight champion Jermall “Hit Man” Charlo (30-0, 22 KO’s) who has clamored for a Canelo showdown for quite a while. However, Charlo is also something of a “big ticket” fighter and would want a significant payday himself.
Therefore, without the revenue generated by a live gate, this bout is probably not going to come together financially speaking.
Then there is Willie “El Mongoose” Monroe Jr (24-3, 6 KO’s) who recently claimed he was in talks for a potential scrap with Canelo. At the time Monroe sounded confident that the fight could take place. While he is not the economic draw that Charlo is, he is local, a solid boxer and more apt to concede somewhat on the financial side.
Listening to Gomez, it doesn’t sound like he is in the running any longer. So it will be interesting to see how this all plays out.