The blockbuster Friday announcement from Canelo Alvarez and his management team that he is now a free agent and able to pursue his own next championship fight, was confirmed Friday afternoon by Alvarez’s now former promoter, Oscar De La Hoya.
First, as we wrote earlier Friday, Eddy Reynoso, the longtime advisor and manager for Alvarez first released a statement saying Canelo was not only free to go from his deal with Golden Boy and the DAZN streaming service but they intend to have Alvarez fight in December.
De La Hoya released a statement of his own later Friday confirming the split with the four division World Champion Alvarez,
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“The lawsuit was resolved to everyone’s satisfaction, and we wish Canelo the best going forward. In strong partnership with DAZN, we will continue showcasing our wide array of talent, including rising superstars like Ryan Garcia, Jaime Mungia and Vergil Ortiz, Jr…” De La Hoya announced
Further, Alvarez attorney, Greg Smith, representing Canelo in his $280 million lawsuit against Golden Boy and DAZN, confirmed also that they would be filing paperwork Friday afternoon in California Federal Court to drop the lawsuit.
“The lawsuit has been resolved. Paperwork will be filed with the courts shortly. Canelo will be a complete free agent and will have no contracts with any network or promoter. He is glad to have this matter behind him.”
Alvarez filed the $280 million lawsuit in September in California Federal Court seeking to formally end his relationship with De La Hoya and DAZN. De La Hoya countered to the court saying that they should enforce the arbitration clause in Alvarez’s agreement to quickly decide whether Alvarez could be free or whether Golden Boy and the streaming service ultimately have the say-so in which opponents he can fight?
Alvarez has not been in the ring since last November, when he captured the WBO Light Heavyweight title by 11th round TKO over Sergey Kovalev.
It is believed that Alvarez wants to have his next fight one weight class down at 168 lb. and could very well end up battling England’s unbeaten WBA Super Middleweight Champ, Callum Smith. Those two were in talks to fight earlier this Fall, but nothing formally happened.
ESPN Deportes reported on Friday mid-day that Alvarez and his team are targeting Saturday, December 19th as his return date with an intriguing opponent. Salvador Rodriguez said Alvarez is looking strongly at Dec. 19th against IBF 168 lb. champ Caleb Plant , who is part of Premier Boxing Champions.
Another point that definitely begs the question is: whether Canelo had to compensate Golden Boy in some manner to separate from his agreement? After all, it’s hard to believe that De La Hoya and his promotional organization would simply let Alvarez, their most prized and lucrative fighter, walk away from his deal for nothing in return.
This is specifically because De La Hoya and Golden Boy were maintaining, as recently as a couple of weeks ago, that they wanted arbitration to decide whether their agreement with Canelo was enforceable or not?
An interesting point was clarified by Yahoo Sports Boxing insider Kevin Iole to Big Fight Weekend last month. That is that according to the Canelo-Golden Boy deal that was handed to the court in California, the promotion was responsible to pay Alvarez in the event that DAZN could not.
And De La Hoya may have realized that in the stalemate with Alvarez was not going to end anytime in the future. And, that DAZN, which has been losing money by the 10’s of millions this year due to the Covid 19 pandemic and subscriber loss, would now be off the hook from having to pay Canelo on average $35 million per fight.