Canelo may make the leap to 175 in his next fight.
Though he says there’s no offer on the table at the moment, Chris Mannix is reporting that middleweight titleholder and top star Canelo Alvarez is focused on landing a fight at 175 pounds with WBO titleholder Sergey Kovalev in his next outing on Sept. 14.
Alvarez (52-1-2, 35 KO) is coming off of a May 4 decision win over Daniel Jacobs, which was the second fight on Canelo’s enormous, $365 million, 11-fight deal with DAZN. He has fought over 160 on two occasions. In 2017, he beat a lethargic Julio Cesar Chavez Jr at a 164-pound catchweight, and in Dec. 2018, he made his DAZN debut with a win at 168 over secondary titleholder Rocky Fielding.
Much of the focus for Alvarez, as far as the chatter goes, has been a third fight with Gennadiy Golovkin in September, but it seems Alvarez and Golden Boy simply aren’t that interested in revisiting GGG, whose team do not want a third fight in Las Vegas. There’s also been talk of Canelo facing 168-pound titleholder Callum Smith, but not in September.
Kovalev (33-3-1, 28 KO) is an interesting proposition. The 36-year-old Russian fighter is a proven top-level fighter at 175 and has been for years, but on pure dimensions, he’s not a huge light heavyweight at 6’0” with a 72½-inch reach. Alvarez is listed at 5’8” with a 70½-inch reach, for what it’s worth. Callum Smith, a super middleweight, is a monster for the weight at 6’3”/78-inch reach, so Kovalev really might be a more winnable scenario for Alvarez in many respects, not the least of which is that Smith is 29 and in his prime, while Kovalev is 36 and past his.
Kovalev is currently involved in a situation with mandatory challenger Anthony Yarde. The two were originally figured to meet this coming weekend in Russia, but that fell through.
There’s nothing concrete here yet, but Canelo has pulled surprises before. He fought Amir Khan out of nowhere a while back, and the fight with Rocky Fielding last year was a total surprise, too. DAZN will want something major for him in September, and with middleweight a little barren past GGG and the Andrade-Sulecki winner — which wouldn’t even be that big of a fight, honestly — his look north in weight is something to take seriously.