Trainer Joe Gallagher says his fighter Callum Smith is pushing hard to be the next opponent for Canelo Alvarez for his September 12 fight. Get this, “Canelo WANTS Callum,” according to Gallagher. If true, then Smith (27-0, 19 KOs) would be the top name that is under consideration for the Golden Boy promoted Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs).
Fringe contender Jason Quigley stunned boxing fans on Thursday in revealing that he’d been given an offer from Team Canelo for the September fight. It was shocking beat Quigley is a rock bottom fringe-level fighter, and he doesn’t fight at 168.
Callum was considered by many to be the #1 fighter at 168, but not anymore. His last fight against John Ryder showed that he’s not the #1 guy at 168.
He had reportedly priced himself out for the Alvarez fight. However, it now looks like Callum has had a change of heart, as his trainer Gallagher says he’s hoping to get the match.
Callum is coming off of a 12 round decision over John Ryder on November 30, and he didn’t look so great in that fight. Indeed, many boxing fans thought Ryder had done enough to edge it or deserve a draw.
Whether that bothers Golden Boy and Canelo that Callum is coming off of a questionable win is unknown. They might be mainly focused on getting the cheapest opponent they can get, and don’t care if the controversy is following the guy that they pick.
Gallagher says Callum still has a chance
“Callum Smith has thrown his name in the hat and he’s ready to go. From what I’m hearing, Canelo wants Callum,” said Gallagher to Sky Sports.
“Canelo is training hard, he wants to fight in September. I believe he wants to fight Callum Smith,” said Gallagher. “There are negotiations going on with Golden Boy [promotional company] and whoever else.
“Callum Smith’s name is still in the frame and we’ll just have to wait and see,” said Gallagher.
Golden Boy Promotions are extremely hush-hush about the potential options for Canelo’s next fight, and it gives the impression that they need to be discrete about it.
When you compare Golden Boy with the way Top Rank and Matchroom promoters Bob Arum and Eddie Hearn openly reveal who they’re trying to set-up fights with, it seems very odd and secretive.
The 6’2″ Smith would be a potentially tough out for Canelo, as he’s big and he can punch with either hand. However, Smith’s inside game is nonexistent, and he’ll have problems if Canelo can work his way in close the way Ryder did numerous times last November.
Callum has accuracy problems
Smith’s power is second to none at 168, but his accuracy is poor. He’s one of those guys that load up on his big shots, and when he lands, it’s devastating. But when Smith misses, he’s vulnerable to getting nailed with counter punches.
In Callum’s last four fights, he’s beaten these fighters:
- Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam
- John Ryder
- Nieky Holzken
- Erik Skoglund
Callum didn’t look good against Ryder or Holzken, and you can say he was exposed. The performances in those two fights suggest that Callum isn’t the #1 or even the #4 super middleweight in the division. Smith is a good fighter, but not on the level of these guys:
- David Benavidez
- Canelo Alvarez
- Caleb Plant
- Daniel Jacobs
A lot of boxing fans became enamored with Callum after he won the World Boxing Super Series tournament in 2018, but his victory in the finals over an injured George Groves was tainted.
Groves had injured his shoulder in his semi-final match against Chris Eubank Jr, and he wasn’t the same guy he’d been before the injury. Smith knocked the shell of Groves out in the seventh and looked impressive. However, he was dealing with a one-armed fighter on the night.