By Sean Jones: Eddie Hearn says Canelo Alvarez is very confident heading into his title fight next Saturday night against WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol on May 7th on DAZN PPV.
Hearn isn’t saying WHY the 31-year-old former four-division world champion Canelo (57-1-2, 39 KOs) is so confident because by all rights, he should be worried about the size, power & technical ability of Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs).
Fighting at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas might have something to do with Canelo’s confidence. This is the same venue that Canelo fought at for both of his fights against Gennadiy Golovkin, which ended in controversy.
Canelo has never lost at that venue, even though he appeared to lose twice. Many fans are still upset about the outcome of the Canelo-Golovkin fights, believing the Kazahstan fighter was robbed twice.
Hopefully, we don’t get another controversial decision involving Canelo dodging another loss because that would cause a dark cloud to follow the Mexican star into his September 17th trilogy match against Golovkin.
There’s a lot on the line for the Canelo vs. Bivol fight in terms of a trilogy match for the Mexican star in September against Golovkin. If Canelo loses to Bivol, he can forget about fighting Golovkin in September.
A loss for Canelo against Bivol would be a huge blow to the city of Las Vegas because Hearn has already said that’s where the Golovkin trilogy fight will be taking place.
With the fans that will be streaming into the city for the third Canelo-Golovkin fight, we’re talking massive money for Las Vegas.
Bivol coming off a flat performance
“I think this is a tough fight for Canelo Alvarez because he’s not facing a guy that is a little bit faded or was stopped before,” said Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn to DAZN Boxing about Canelo Alvarez challenging WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol next Saturday night.
“He’s facing a guy that is a really fresh and talented world champion, who has been waiting for this opportunity for a long, long time,” Hearn continued about Canelo’s tough challenge against the unbeaten Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs).
“Technically, Bivol is very, very good. He has good feet, and he can punch as well. He’s obviously much bigger than Canelo. So, I actually think that’s a really tough fight,” said Hearn.
“You think that size, he’s a very good fighter, but he had a flat performance against Craig Richards [in May 2021],” said Darren Barker about Bivol’s closer than expected 12-round unanimous decision against fringe light heavyweight contender Craig Richards from England.
“Bivol has had to through these last three fights recently defending, but without any excitement to the challenge. But don’t forget, he beat Joe Smith convincingly, the other [light heavyweight] world champion,” said Hearn.
Bivol fought passively in his narrow 12-round unanimous decision last year against British fighter Craig Richards in Manchester, England.
You can argue that Bivol was lucky to get the victory, as it was very close at the end. The judges judged it 115-114, 115-113, and 118-110.
It would have been easier for Bivol if he fought aggressively against Richards as he had against his earlier opponents like Jean Pascal, Joe Smith Jr., and Sullivan Barrera.
Canelo highly confident
“Whether you think [Artur] Beterbiev or Bivol is better, it’s one and two in the division. So, Bivol is 2 or 1 in the division, and a lot of people have Beterbiev as #1,” said Hearn.
“You’ve spent a lot of time with Canelo, but it just seems to me as an ex-fighter, he just oozes confidence,” Barker said.
“His confidence is like nothing we’ve never seen in a fighter, nothing,” said Hearn about Canelo Alvarez seeming confident. “Every fighter has doubts.
“He has zero doubts. I promise you there is not one percent of that. No sleepless nights, no worries. He just believes he’s better than everybody else, and he’ll find a way,” said Hearn.
“What weight will he be coming down from?” said Barker about Canelo.
“I reckon at the moment, he’s not a million miles away from 175,” Hearn said of Canelo. “I guess he goes up to 180. I think he’s probably around that weight. I think it’s a big disadvantage for Canelo at 175.
“I think people tend to forget that. He’s a big middleweight basically, and he’s a small 168 or a normal 168. He’s a very small light heavyweight, and he’s going up against the best in the division.
‘But honestly, I’ve spoken to him before, talked about when we made the Callum Smith fight and the Billy Joe Saunders fight. I would say to him, ‘This is a tough fight,’ and he would almost[laugh].
“The Billy Joe situation with the ring [size]. Having to go tell Canelo Alvarez that we’re going to make the ring much bigger two days before the fight, I thought that was a massive disadvantage to him. He said, ‘No problem.’
“I was like, ‘Are you sure?’ ‘That’s absolutely fine. It doesn’t matter,” said Hearn about Canelo having a casual attitude about the ring size being increased for his fight against Saunders.
Considering the weak bunch of champions Canelo has been fighting in the last four years, you can understand why he’s been so confident.
He hasn’t fought anyone good since his rematch with Golovkin in 2018, and some boxing fans believe Canelo had been ducking David Benavidez and Demetrius Andrade with all his might.
Canelo’s recent wins over belt holders:
- Caleb Plant
- Billy Joe Saunders
- Callum Smith
- Rocky Fielding
- Sergey Kovalev