NEW YORK– Canelo Alvarez easily defeated Gennadity Golovkin in September and retained his unified Super Welterweight titles, this after losing a unanimous decision to Dmitril Bivol in attempts to continue his legacy as a light heavyweight champion. Alvarez sustained an injury to his left hand last year that required surgery that kept him on the sidelines and is completely recovered.
But the unified champion in the four-belt title era, the belts won versus Caleb Plant in November of 2021, is an active and rare champion who hardly stays idle with a three or four fight a year schedule. He, to many is considered the face of boxing and icon from Mexico.
Alvarez has capitalized on his success with commercial endorsements and public appearances, and with no alliance with a promoter can choose where he goes. His latest deal as a sought after free agent was two fights with Matchroom Boxing and the DAZN streaming network, the first was his successful win in a trilogy fight with Golovkin.
Now completely recovered from injury, Alvarez on Tuesday announced his return to Mexico for the first time in over eleven and a half years when he defends the titles against John Ryder at the Akron Stadium in Guadalajara, Mexico, on Saturday May 6, live on DAZN and DAZN PPV.
Tuesday was a welcome home press event in Mexico for Alvarez, and Wednesday he and Ryder will do it again at a venue in San Diego. Two events in a matter of days that provides an example of the Canelo Alvarez claim to be the best-pound-for pound fighter in the sport.
Disputed, though with his loss to Biviol, also the increased popularity of undefeated and young superstar Gervonta Davis who has a bout scheduled April 22 in Las Vegas with undefeated and young power puncher Ryan Garcia that will be televised on Showtime PPV.
“I feel really happy to be coming back in May because following my surgery, I was unsure of when I’d be coming back,” Alvarez said. “Returning to the ring and coming back to fight in Jalisco, where I’m from. Makes me especially happy. And in John Ryder, I’m facing a very competitive fighter.”
There have been unconfirmed reports that Alvarez was no longer interested in fighting, one in particular of enjoying a lifestyle of fun and drinking. I have confirmed from reliable sources, connected to Alvarez, that those were persistent and inaccurate reports that were coming from opposing fight camps and that is nothing new with his popularity and success.
Assuming Alvarex wins, he would be in line to face a possible mandatory for the titles pending on the winner of the March 25 Showtime PPV clash between David Benavidez and Caleb Plant.
The 32-year old Alvarez, (58-2-2, 39 KO’s) residing in San Diego, vows to continue his legacy and returns to Mexico on Cinco de Mayo weekend. It will be 4180 days since he last stepped through the ropes in Mexico, when he stopped Kermit Cintron in Mexico City in five rounds to defend his WBO World Light-Middleweight title.
WBO mandatory challenger Ryder (32-5 18 KOs) as the popular fighter from London, travels to Mexico for the biggest fight of his 12-year career. ‘The Gorilla’ landed the WBO interim title in his last fight when Zach Parker retired on his stool after four rounds of their clash in London, England in November.
That win for the 34 year old followed a career-best victory earlier in 2022 over former Middleweight ruler and old Canelo foe Daniel Jacobs, with Ryder having also tackled three other Britons who have taken on the Mexican king, challenging Callum Smith for the Super-Middleweight World crown after fights with Billy Joe Saunders and Rocky Fielding.
“There’s no denying that Canelo is one of the greats and I’ve got a lot of respect for what he’s achieved in the sport but I fully believe this is my time fulfull my dream of becoming a World champion,” said Ryder.
“I’m not going over there for a holiday. For me this is purely business and my full focus is on going into his backyard in Guadalajara on May 6 and bringing those belts back with me to the UK. I want to thank the team, Tony and Charlie Sims and Matchroom Boxing for making this happen.”
Another Injury For Top Rank: Xander Zayes the undefeated 20-year old super welterweight from San Juan Puerto Rico, a top and rising star with Top Rank Boxing, had to pull out of his April 1 ESPN televised fight with Ronald Cruz due to an undisclosed injury sustained in training.
That was an obvious blow to Zayes and Top Rank, though not a serious injury that will keep Zayes sidelined for an extended period of time.
But the hits keep coming for Top Rank because U.S. Olympic silver medalist Richard Torrez Jr. has been forced to withdraw from his March 25 homecoming fight due to a training injury. Torrez (5-0, 5 KOs), from Tulare, California, was scheduled to face Willie Jake Jr. in the six-round ESPN-televised opener at Save Mart Center in Fresno, California. The 23-year-old southpaw knockout artist, who has three first-round knockouts on his ledger, is expected to return this summer.
The ESPN broadcast will now be a doubleheader featuring Jose Ramirez and Richard “RC” Commey in a junior welterweight showdown and a minimumweight title unification fight between WBA champion Seniesa “Super Bad” Estrada and WBC queen Tina Rupprecht.
Ramirez-Commey and Estrada-Rupprecht will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. Promoted by Top Rank, in association with DiBella Entertainment.
Rich Mancuso Co-Editor and Senior Writer LatinoSports.com Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso. Watch “Sports With Rich” with Rich and co-host Robert Rizzo Tuesday evening 8pmET on the SLG Network and YouTube
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