Canelo underestimating Bivol, already planning December fight

Looking past his May 7th title shot against unbeaten WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol, Canelo Alvarez is already in the planning stages for a third fight this year against potentially John Ryder or the Joshua Buatsi vs. Craig Richards.

Ryder is Canelo’s WBA mandatory challenger at 168, and not much of a threat due to his lack of power. If Canelo fights Ryder, the fight will be staged in London.

It could be a mistake on Canelo’s part to count his chickens before they’ve hatched when it comes to the fight against Bivol because he’s looking really strong in training for their fight. This isn’t one of the deficient champions that Canelo fought last year.

Bivol can actually fight, and it’s possible that he could outbox and outwork Canelo. Whether Bivol is given the decision or not, that’s another thing.

The Canelo-Bivol fight is taking place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas which is the same venue Canelo fought at both of his matches against Gennady Golovkin

Not only is Canelo (57-1-2, 39 KOs) assuming a victory over Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs) he’s also going by the belief that he’ll beat Gennadiy Golovkin in their trilogy match on September 17th.

Sanchez not giving Bivol much chance

“Bivol is a very good technical fighter, a great amateur background, but Canelo right now, he’s in his time,” said trainer Abel Sanchez to KO Artist Sports. “Bivol doesn’t have anything to threaten him other than technique.

“To beat Canelo, you’re going to have to back him up, you’re going to have to be strong, you’re going to have to be able to take his shots.

“Most importantly, you’re going to have to try to be the one in charge. If you don’t do that against Canelo, as you saw against Billy Joe Saunders and the [Caleb] Plant fight,” said Sanchez.

It doesn’t matter that Bivol isn’t the biggest puncher. We saw Canelo lose to Floyd Mayweather Jr and seemingly lose to Erislandy Lara. Neither of those fighters are huge punchers.

To beat Canelo, you have to box him and hope the judges don’t foul up the scoring. What we saw in Canelo’s fights with Golovkin and Lara is that the judges don’t factor in jabs.

They just look for power shots, and give away rounds, even if there’s a very small number of hard punches that connect.

Bivol has enough pop in his punches to win a decision, but he’s got to be aware that he won’t be given the victory unless he puts it on the Mexican star.

“By the fifth and sixth round, Canelo was doing things as he does on the bag,” said Sanchez about Alvarez’s mismatches against belt-holders Billy Joe Saunders and Caleb Plant. “He had no threat in front of him. If you can’t back him up, it’s going to be difficult,” Abel said about Canelo.

Only 3 fighters give Canelo trouble

“There are only three guys in my opinion that can give him a hard time,” said Sanchez. “Whether they can beat him, who knows? [Artur] Beterbiev is one of them, David Benavidez is another one, and I think if Golovkin gets in the kind of shape that he used to before, and goes back to being the stalker instead of allowing people to think he can box.”

Canelo Alvarez, Dmitry Bivol boxing image / photo

In Beterbiev’s face, Canelo may wait until he’s 38 or 39 before fighting him, so he won’t be as dangerous as he would if the fight took place right now.

“I’m not saying he’s not a good boxer. He is, but his forte is his strength,” said Sanchez about Golovkin. “He hunts you down, hits you everywhere and you succumb to things like that.

“So, if he can get into that kind of shape and take that style into the fight, I think he gives Canelo a hell of a fight. There are only three guys that can give him a fight.

“He’s in a no-win situation just like we were when we had Gennadiy,” said Sanchez about Canelo being criticized by boxing fans no matter who he fights. “He has to fight who he and his team feels is the right opponent for him next.

“Forget about what everybody is saying. I think his resume speaks for itself. I think he has the best resume in boxing right now,” Abel said of Canelo, “What anybody says doesn’t matter. It’s what’s best for the sport and what’s best for Canelo.

“They should,” said Abel on Canelo beating Bivol and Golovkin defeating Ryota Murata on April 9th. “His birthday is April the 8th. He’s going on 40, wow!

“Murata is going to pose a little bit of problems, but remember, Gennadiy is Gennadiy. If Gennadiy is in any kind of shape, it should be a fight that he wins.

“Gennadiy has to be in shape. If he’s in shape, he beats Murata. Murata doesn’t pose that big of a threat to him. Murata is still a tough fight, it’s not an easy fight.

“Canelo is a hell of a body puncher too, and he never did. Sometimes when you have a guy in front of you that are two stars that they are. It’s sometimes difficult to do what you do best because they’re trying to take that way from you.

“Canelo could have gone to the body too, but Golovkin didn’t allow him. Golovkin wanted to go to the body, but Canelo didn’t allow him.

“Just because you’ve done it in the past with a particular opponent doesn’t mean you can do it against a guy that is in front of you now.

“They fought 24 great rounds,” Sanchez said about Canelo and Golovkin. “Unfortunately in the second fight, he boxed a little bit more than I wanted him to, but they’re both great fighters.

“The only difference in that is Gennady is getting a little bit older, so that could make the difference, who knows?” said Sanchez on the third fight between Canelo and Golovkin.

“It could be a barometer of where he’s [Golovkin] at. He’s got a good coach [Johnathon Banks]and hopefully, JB can engineer a win over Canelo finally,” said Sanchez.

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