Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is looking for a quick turnaround fight.
Fresh off his dominating win over Callum Smith last December 19th, the Mexican boxing superstar is expected to fight again on February 27th against WBC 168-pound mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim in a homecoming bout in his native Guadalajara, in Mexico.
By beating Smith, Alvarez won the vacant WBC super-middleweight title and annexed the Briton’s WBA (super) and Ring middleweight titles. The WBC had ordered Alvarez to face Yildirim for the vacant title before Canelo got involved in a court battle with his promoters. When Alvarez settled his legal woes, Yildirim agreed to step aside to pave way for Canelo vs Smith with the assurance that he gets the first crack at the winner.
A Homecoming Bout
Shortly after becoming Junior Mexican National Boxing Champion in 2005, Alvarez turned professional at the tender young age of 15. In his first 19 months as a pro, Alvarez knocked out 11 out of 13 documented opponents, all of whom were much older than him. He would become a fixture in Mexico, fighting his first 31 bouts inside his home country and winning the NABF and WBC Latino welterweight titles along the way.
Canelo Alvarez to fight Avni Yildirim on Feb. 27 in homecoming bout in Mexico https://t.co/4iRgjixB2q
— L.A. Times Sports (@latimessports) December 27, 2020
But since defeating Kermit Cintron in his third defense of the WBC light middleweight title in Mexico City on November 26, 2011, Alvarez has fought exclusively in the United States. And his last fight in his hometown of Guadalajara dates back to 201 when he defeated Luciano Leonel Cuello to win the WBC silver light-middleweight championship at the Arena V.F.G.
According to Alvarez’s longtime manager and confidant Eddy Reynoso, they are currently looking at venues such as Estadio Jalisco which is the third-largest stadium in Mexico, and the Los Charros’ Baseball Stadium which hosted Pool D of the first round of the 2018 World Baseball Classic.
Fighting on His Usual Fight Dates
Reynoso also told the LA Times that if all goes well and Canelo beats Yildirim, he will fight again during his usual fight dates on Cinco de Mayo Weekend in May and the Mexican Independence Day weekend in September. Reynoso added that Alvarez will be fighting exclusively at 168-pounds, true to Alvarez’s previous statements that he wants to unify the belts at super middleweight.
Sources: Eddie Hearn and Eddy Reynoso discussing a two-fight deal for Canelo Alvarez to compete on DAZN in February and May against Avni Yildirim and Billy Joe Saunders, respectively. If deal reached, first bout could take place Feb. 27 in Canelo’s hometown, Guadalajara, Mexico
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) December 26, 2020
Contrary to earlier reports that Alvarez is fixated on fighting WBO super middleweight champion Billie Joe Saunders in May, Reynoso said that they are currently looking at three possible opponents for the Mexican if he gets past Yildirim. Saunders is one but they are also considering IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant who has a January 30 bout against Caleb Truax.
The third opponent is no other than Gennady Golovkin, whom Alvarez has fought twice before. However, Golovkin will only be an option if he agrees to meet Alvarez at 168 pounds. The Kazakh middleweight champion was DAZN’s preferred opponent for Alvarez before it, Alvarez, and Golden Boy Promotions went to court.
Online sportsbooks currently have Canelo as a -260 betting favorite to beat Triple G who is currently pegged at +200 at SportsBetting.ag.
Making Up for Lost Time?
With three possible fights in 2021, Alvarez is certainly trying to make up for lost time, and income. Prior to fighting Smith earlier this month, Alvarez was in the freezer for 13 months for several reasons. One was the inability of his team and promoters to agree on a next opponent. Another was the coronavirus pandemic which halted all sports from March to May 2021. Because of these, Alvarez fought only once in 2020, the first time in his career where he’s fought once during a year.
Report- Canelo Back Late February- Maybe Three Times 2021: Fresh off an impressive showing in his first fight of 2020, Unified Super Middleweight champ, Canelo Alvarez, will apparently waste little time in getting back in… https://t.co/Pmv9efKGtz https://t.co/Sa1QDWOnr6 #BOXING pic.twitter.com/TF03bjQHeN
— The Pugilist Mag 🥊 (@ThePugilistMag) December 27, 2020
After his split with Golden Boy and DAZN, Alvarez is now a promotional free agent although he is reportedly working with Eddie Hearn for his 2021 fights, presumably on one fight deals at a time. With no contractual obligation, Alvarez controls his time and can fight whenever he wants, for as long as he has the right foe and the right price.
If he does end up fighting thrice next year, it will mark the first time he’s fought more than twice in a year since 2011 when he had four bouts. Alvarez is currently the number one pound for pound fighter in the sport and he is boxing’s top PPV draw. It’s about time he took matters into his own hands and forge his own career path.
Steve Richardson started writing content online in 2013 and has yet to slow down. Since joining our team at GamblingSites.org, he has covered sports, casino news, gambling laws, and much more! …