The face of boxing, Canelo Alvarez (58-2-2, 39 KOs), confirmed today that the next title defense of his undisputed super middleweight championship would be on May 6th in Jalisco, Mexico.
Although the former four-division world champion Canelo didn’t reveal who his opponent will be, it’ll be against the Eddie Hearn-promoted John Ryder, his WBO mandatory at 168.
The superstar Canelo is fighting for the first time in Mexico since his 12th round knockout of British fighter Ryan Rhodes in June 2011 at the Arena VFG, in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Interestingly, Canelo’s return to Mexico will be against another British fighter in ‘The Gorilla’ Ryder instead of someone that his fans from that country would likely prefer to see him fighting David Benavidez. That’s a fighter that Canelo’s fans have been urging him to fight for the past five years, but he’s chosen not to grant their requests.
“Saul ‘Canelo’ Álvarez confirmed his first fight in Jalisco in 12 years,” said Salvador Rodriguez to ESPN Knockout. “It is known that the British John Ryder is already advanced in the talks.
“The favorite venue for Canelo Álvarez’s return home is the Jalisco Stadium.”
We still don’t know yet whether this will be on DAZN PPV, but given the huge price hikes in the subscription rates for UK & U.S fans, it wouldn’t be a good idea for Canelo’s fight with ‘The Gorilla’ Ryder (32-5, 18 KOs) to be sold on pay-per-view.
U.S. fans aren’t eager to pay $75 on PPV on top of the existing monthly subscription rates to see Canelo take another tune-up fight against Ryder, and it’s doubtful that UK fans are chomping at the bit to see this fight as well.
Canelo’s last match against past-his-prime 40-year-old Gennadiy Golovkin was viewed by many as, in effect, a tune-up and was looked like a soft sparring match between good friends through most of the fight.
Despite this being a tune-up, there’s a real possibility that Canelo could lose because his gas tank has seemingly worsened in his last two fights, losing to Dmitry Bivol last May, and his trilogy contest against Golovkin last September.
Ryder is a fighter known for pushing at a fast pace and having an excellent engine. It’s fair to say if Canelo gasses against Ryder after three or four rounds, he will have significant problems in the second half of the fight.
“Celebrating the 200 years free and sovereign of Jalisco, I return to fight in my land. I will defend all my titles this coming month of May. More details coming soon,” Canelo said on social media.
It’s hard to know why Canelo chose to stage the fight with Ryder in Mexico because his promoter Eddie Hearn wanted to bring the match to the UK, where it would draw well.
Canelo would have been better off choosing Benavidez or Cuban David Morrell for the May 6th date. Of course, the chances of Canelo losing to both of those fighters would be extremely high, but at least he would be giving his Mexican fans a fight worth seeing.