Report- Canelo Back Late February- Maybe Three Times 2021
Fresh off an impressive showing in his first fight of 2020, Unified Super Middleweight champ, Canelo Alvarez, will apparently waste little time in getting back in the ring two months later.
First reported by Manouk Akopyan of the L.A. Times, Canelo will reportedly face WBC 168 lb. contender Avni Yildirim in his hometown of Guadalajara,
.@Canelo Alvarez ended a 13-month stint on the sidelines with a big win last week.
The Mexican star is now planning for a 3-fight slate in 2021.
It'll begin on home soil with a mandatory & perhaps end with a fight vs. GGG at 168.
— Manouk Akopyan (@ManoukAkopyan) December 27, 2020
The Canelo bout with Yildrim has been long rumored for months and would make sense as a “lesser” opponent that Alvarez could face so soon off his latest bout.
That’s, when he dominated England’s Callum Smith over 12 rounds last weekend capturing the WBA 168 lb. title at the Alamo Dome in San Antonio, TX. The four division World Champ Alvarez, now 54-1-2, showed little rust in punishing the previously unbeaten Smith over the course of the bout.
Akopyan got confirmation from Canelo’s trainer and spokesman Eddy Reynoso about the immediate plans to fight potentially at outdoor stadiums Estadio Jalisco and Los Charros’ Baseball Stadium on February 27th.
Yildirim is 21-2 and former WBC “International” 168 lb. title holder, and would be a suitable opponent for Canelo. He last was in action February of 2019 when he lost a technical decision to WBC champ Anthony Dirrell. And, the WBC previously anointed the potential Canelo-Yildirim matchup as a title fight.
Also on Saturday, The Athletic’s Mike Coppinger reported that Canelo is in negotiation with DAZN and Matchroom Boxing for at a two fight deal,
Sources: Eddie Hearn and Eddy Reynoso discussing a two-fight deal for Canelo Alvarez to compete on DAZN in February and May against Avni Yildirim and Billy Joe Saunders, respectively. If deal reached, first bout could take place Feb. 27 in Canelo’s hometown, Guadalajara, Mexico
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) December 26, 2020
The Canelo matchup with the unbeaten WBO champ Saunders seems natural, as that was going to be Canelo’s next fight back seven months ago.
That’s because DAZN USA chairman John Skipper reportedly went to Southern California last March and met face to face with Alvarez in an attempt to solve Alvarez’s increasing dispute with his promoter Oscar De La Hoya and the streaming service.
In that face to face meeting they were discussing the possible bout with Saunders to be held later in May, as part of “Cinco De Mayo” weekend likely in Las Vegas. However, the Covid 19 pandemic hit and delayed those plans. In the meantime, Saunders was suspended indefinitely by the British Boxing Board of Control for comments he made on a social media video about domestic violence.
Canelo then moved onto other possible opponents before finally suing De La Hoya and DAZN in September to free himself of them dictating whom he couldn’t fight. De La Hoya eventually agreed to let Alvarez go free and make his own deals, leading to the Smith Unification fight.
Saunders just fought December 5th in a “stay busy” defense over British journeyman Martin Murray in England. So, he would be on the same timeline as Alvarez for a May battle likely back in Vegas, but unknown if fans of any significance could be there.