By: Hans Themistode
Time isn’t exactly on the side of Canelo Alvarez and promoter Eddie Hearn. With the Mexican star failing to negotiate terms for an undisputed showdown against IBF super middleweight titlist Caleb Plant, team Alvarez has reportedly elected to move on.
Under normal circumstances, the unified 168-pound champion has primarily fought twice a year, both being on Mexican holidays in May and September. Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) took care of business on Mexican Labour Day weekend this past May, stopping Billy Joe Saunders in the eighth round and relieving him of his WBO super middleweight title.
While the pound-for-pound star would love to keep his tradition going by fighting on Mexican Independence Day weekend on September 18th, Hearn admits that the chances of that happening are getting worse and worse by the day.
“I spoke to Saul a couple times,” said Hearn during an interview with IFL TV. “I think the decision is, do we go on September 18th? The decision has to come any day now.”
With Plant seemingly out of the running for a showdown with Alvarez, Hearn has remained confident in his ability to lineup another high-quality opponent. Although Alvarez has firmly placed his flag in the 168-pound ground, there’s a high possibility that his next contest takes place elsewhere. Presently, IBF middleweight belt holder Gennadiy Golovkin and unified light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev, are amongst the select few in the race to Alvarez.
On multiple occasions, Hearn revealed that any of those aforementioned names would make for a great fight against the unified 168-pound titlist.
In the case of Golovkin, the Kazakstan product believes he received the short end of the stick in back-to-back fights with Alvarez. In September of 2017, Golovkin was forced to settle for a split decision draw. With that said, it was ostensible to most of the viewing public that Golovkin should have been given the win.
The two would do it again 12 months later, this time, Golovkin would suffer the first defeat of his career, albeit somewhat controversially. Since then, the 39-year-old has attempted to lure the Mexican star back into the ring.
As for Beterbiev, Hearn has stated on numerous occasions that while the Russian knockout artist is a massive puncher, a matchup against him is one that Alvarez “sickly” wants.
Still, despite the credentials of both fighters, Hearn believes another 175-pound titleholder is in the driver’s seat as the next opponent for Alvarez.
“I think [Dmitry] Bivol is the fight,” admitted Hearn. “He’s ready, obviously, we promote him. They want the fight and have been looking for that breakout fight. I think it’s a really, really good fight, a tough fight. We’ll have to see.”
Bivol, 30, has long craved a matchup against Alvarez. The WBA light heavyweight belt holder may have walked through his competition up until this point but he’s struggled as of late with activity.
After appearing in the ring only twice in 2019, Bivol (18-0, 11 KOs) took the entirety of 2020 off. He recently returned this past May against journeymen Craig Richards. Bivol would eke out a close decision win on the night. Now, he could be on the verge of landing the opponent he’s yearned for.