Oscar De La Hoya told the media earlier today that he’s “very close” to having an opponent for Canelo Alvarez’s next fight in May. De La Hoya says Canelo’s opponent is “DANGEROUS”, and that the fight will take place in the 168 lb division.
With De La Hoya saying Canelo’s next fight will be at super middleweight, it sounds like they’re looking to match him against unbeaten WBA Super World 168-b champion Callum Smith (27-0, 19 KOs) next.
There were only 2 super middleweights under consideration for Canelo’s next fight, and that’s Callum and the light hitting WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders (29-0, 14 KOs), who is hardly dangerous with his 48.28% KO percentage. Saunders is a purely finesse fighter, who wins his matches by being crafty in winning in the same way heavyweight Tyson Fury does.
Canelo’s next opponent almost done
“Nobody is out. No, Nobody is out,” said De La Hoya to the media on Wednesday about Canelo Alvarez’s next fight on May 2. “We’re actually very close. I can’t say the names, because if I mention the names, they add another zero to their [asking price]. It’s crazy, but we’re close. I’ll tell you one thing.
“It’ll be a dangerous fight for Canelo. Nah,” said De La Hoya when asked if fans will have to go to Japan to see Canelo’s next fight. “We’ll see. We’re doing the best for Canelo, and giving him the best challenges. He wants to fight the best. I tell you. Canelo is a guy who wants to fight the very best,” said De La Hoya.
So what we’ve learned from Oscar is Canelo won’t be fighting in Japan next, which means that his next fight will not be against Ryota Murata. As far as dangerous super middleweights go, there’s only two sluggers in the top tier that fit the description for being dangerous.
Those WBC super middleweight champion David Benavidez and WBA champ Callum Smith. Benavidez doesn’t fight on DAZN, so he’s unlikely to be selected. That would be an interesting opponent for Canelo if he chose Benavidez, but very unlikely.
Callum Smith is coming off of a poor effort against his WBA mandatory John Ryder last November. The 6’3″ won the fight, but a lot of fans believe that Rynder was robbed, and should have been given the decision. He fought well enough to deserve the win, and showed that Callum has a poor engine.
Callum will have problems if there’s a rehydration limit
If Canelo and Golden Boy Promotions sign Callum, and get him to agree to a 10-lb rehydration clause, he’s going to be terribly drained for the fight. Callum is like a light-heavyweight, who is still able to make the 168-lb weight limit.
Up until recently, Smith had been able to make the 168 lb limit without looking weak and sickly, but that all changed against Ryder. For that fight, Callum looked so drained in making weight that he didn’t have the normal energy that he’s shown in the past.
If that was just a one-time thing, then Canelo will have problems against him, but it might not be. If Callum has to deal with a 10-lb rehydration clause, that’s going to be a double whammy for him. Not only will it be hard for Callum to make 168, but then he’ll have to deal with the 10-lb rehydration clause if Golden Boy sticks that in the contract.
Canelo wants to fight at 168 says De La Hoya
“Yeah, that’s what he wants, then that’s what he gets,” said De La Hoya about Canelo’s next fight at 168. “When we work it out, we’ll let you know. That’s who Canelo is. He fights all champions,” said De La Hoya.
There’s not much choice for Canelo but to fight at super middleweight for his next fight. If he competes at 160, then he would be expected to fight these guys:
It’s easier for Canelo if he fights at 168 against a potentially weight drained Callum or the light hitting Saunders. The main drawback in Canelo fighting either of those guys is he’s not generally known by American boxing fans. It’s not the ideal situation for DAZN in taking a fight against British fighters that U.S fans haven’t heard of or seen before.