OSCAR DE LA HOYA, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions:
Thank you to all the media, all the international media for today’s call. We have WBC Ring Magazine and lineal middleweight world champion, Canelo Álvarez, who holds a record of 46 wins with one defeat and 32 KOs.
Canelo, as you know, will be defending his WBC Ring Magazine World Championship against Amir “King” Khan Cinco de Mayo weekend, which is May 7 at the new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas live on HBO Pay-Per-View.
We are counting down the days now to this mega fight with two of the biggest international fighters fighting at the biggest arena in the world. It’s going to be a great event and the first boxing event at the T-Mobile Arena since the venue opened earlier this month.
Canelo versus Khan is guaranteed to give the fans action. This is because history has shown us that when you get speed and power in that ring, it makes for a high-intensity, action-packed fight, and that’s exactly what the fans want to see, and they want to be entertained.
I was at Amir Khan’s training camp yesterday with all the media and he’s looking incredible. He’s looking strong. He’s looking powerful, and he has not lost his speed. He’s looking fast. So obviously this goes to show you that this is a fight that’s dangerous for both guys, but obviously I know that Canelo, as I’ve seen many times in camp now, he’s looking in great shape, and he’s ready to go against Amir Khan on May 7.
Tickets are still available. They are going extremely fast, and we expect a total sellout on fight night, and obviously if you can’t be in Las Vegas, this fight is being televised live on HBO Pay-Per-View, the best network for boxing.
Last thing, I want to thank the sponsors, Cerveza Tecate, BORN BOLD, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Casa Mexico Tequila, and “DOOM – Fight Like Hell” on May 13. The sponsors have been doing an incredible, incredible job on activations on a national scale, so we greatly appreciate that.
Now, let me introduce to you, Team Canelo. I’m extremely happy to introduce my friend, he is the manager and trainer to Canelo Alvarez, and to say a few words, that is José ‘Chepo’ Reynoso.
JOSE ‘CHEPO’ REYNOSO, Manager and Trainer to Canelo Alvarez: Good morning. Basically, we’re towards the end of final stages of training camp, which would be one of the biggest events in Canelo’s career. We’re very happy and training hard so that we can be victorious, and so that we can celebrate and say ‘Viva Mexico’ and ‘Viva Canelo.’
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Gracias, Chepo. Now, next, it is my pleasure to introduce to you the trainer of Canelo Alvarez. He’s been doing a tremendous job, along with Chepo, with Canelo. They have a great dynamic together and they are preparing like no other for this fight. Let me introduce to you Eddy Reynoso.
EDDY REYNOSO, Head Trainer to Canelo Alvarez: Good afternoon to everybody, and I want to say hi to everyone.
So we’ve had great preparation. There’s three weeks to go till fight time. We haven’t had any mishaps. Everything is going just as planned and we’ll be ready to fight.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: It is my pleasure now to introduce to you the champion, at the age of 25, Guadalajara, Jalisco México’s Canelo Alvarez has conquered the boxing world over, captivating fans both at home and around the globe with his action-packed fighting style, his charisma, and willingness to take on the toughest challenges.
The 2015 Fighter of the Year candidate’s road to stardom began in 2011 with a win over Matthew “Magic” Hatton for the vacant WBC Super Welterweight World title, his first title defense against Ryan Rhodes and stoppage victories over Alfonso Gomez and Kermit Cintron.
Canelo has already faced the likes of Sugar Shane Mosley, Josesito Lopez, Austin Trout, in front of 40,000 fans at the Alamo Dome. He’s already fought Mayweather; the second-highest grossing bout only behind Mayweather and Pacquiao. He’s faced Angulo, and Cuba’s Erislandy Lara. He’s fought Kirkland in the Minute Maid Park in front of more than 31,000 fans where he received ESPN.com’s Knockout of the Year.
In November, he defeated feature Hall of Fame champion Miguel Cotto for the WBC Ring Magazine and Lineal Middleweight Championship in front of a packed arena at the Mandalay Bay Event Center where they generated to more than 900,000 homes across the country.
And now Canelo will look to remain on top of the sport by defeating Amir “King” Khan on May 7 in Las Vegas.
It is my pleasure, with a record of 46-1, 32 knockouts, to introduce to you Canelo Alvarez.
CANELO ALVAREZ, WBC, Ring Magazine and Lineal Middleweight World Champion: Good afternoon to everyone. I’m very happy to be on this call with you. We’re just a few weeks away from the fight. I’ve had a great preparation. I can’t wait to get in the ring and to give everyone a great fight. Thank you.
Q. Canelo, there’s a lot of folks out there that look at this and do find it to be a match up of speed versus power. Some say ‘why is Canelo fighting a much smaller fighter?’ I would like to know your response to the folks who say, ‘come on, Canelo, fight a guy your own size.’
CANELO ALVAREZ: There’s always going to be critics. There’s people supporting you and there’s always people that are against you. I really don’t worry about that.
I never underestimate anyone in the ring because anything can happen in the ring. My job is to be prepared, to be ready for the best possible fighter so I can give a great performance.
It doesn’t really bother me. I really don’t think about it. At the end of the day, it’s going to be a great event and I’m going to be ready for the fight.
Q. I know you’re preparing for an important fight in your own career, but I wonder if part of you is going to take a little break on Saturday night and maybe watch and see what GGG does in the ring in the Forum in Los Angeles. Will you watch that fight as scouting perhaps for a future show down with Golovkin?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Yeah, if I have the time, if I’m free on Saturday night, I’ll watch it. I’ll sit down and watch it. If not, I’ll probably record it and watch it later. I follow boxing, so yeah, most likely I’m going to watch it.
Q. Will you be watching it because you’re a fan or because this is the fighter that, all due respect to Amir, everybody wants to see you fight Golovkin in the fall. In other words, you’re watching not as a fan, because this is a guy you may step in the ring with in the future.
CANELO ALVAREZ: That fight’s going to happen. It’s going to have to happen. The fight is eventually going to happen. But I’m watching it because I’m a fan, I’m a boxing fan, and I like to watch it. It’s what we do when we’re in training camp. We try to watch all the fights that are televised when we have time to watch them.
Q. Where do you stand as the promoter? Are you going to try to make that fight for the fall?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, look, obviously it’s a fight that, you know, the question is not if, but when. That’s a fight that as a promoter, it’s a fight that I want to see; that the world wants to see, but as a promoter, I want it to be the biggest event in the history of this sport to attract fans and to bring back the fans that we lost when people witnessed Manny Pacquiao versus Mayweather.
So my question every single day is: How can I accomplish that? And in order to accomplish that, there’s a famous saying in boxing, that one certain promoter once said — and you know what that is. But this fight has to happen at the perfect moment, at the perfect time, and I think we’re getting close.
Q. What saying were you referring to? I’m not sure what you meant.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, the marination. The marination.
Q. Okay. That sounds to me — I understand where you’re coming from, from the business point of view, but it does sound to me that wouldn’t be this coming fall.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: You never know. In this sport, you never know. And look, Canelo is a competitor. We’re all competitors here. You just never know. So first thing’s first; he has to take care, and we have to get through Amir Khan, and then we’ll sit down and we’ll see what happens.
Q. But you’re not committing to the fight even though it’s mandated out — you don’t think about it, maybe you’ll do it, maybe you won’t, but you’re not going to commit to it even though it’s the fight that’s been ordered; is that my correct assessment?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Exactly.
Q. How similar are your careers, yours and Canelo? Obviously you had your great career, and Canelo is starting his now. How similar are the careers?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: You know, there’s some similarities, but I feel that Saul is more advanced at this point of his career. He’s more advanced. He’s accomplished a lot more than I did at 25 years old. A lot of people forget, he’s just 25. He’s just 25 years old.
So at this early stage of his career, he’s a little more advanced. And for me, I admire that. I admire his career and I’m going to support him 100 percent, because he’s still young and he still has so much more to go.
Q. You’re fighting a fighter from England. I’m told that you’re learning English, so you’re going to obviously tap into the European market now. You have a great campaign not only in Spanish but in English, as well. Are you trying to broaden your market? What exactly is it you’re trying to do?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Look, I really don’t look for these things to happen. My job, and I’m very fortunate, is to box, and I train hard and I give the best of me. These deals come and I’m not trying to tap into my market. It’s just something very fortunate that my career, that I’ve been able to have this in my career.
Obviously with Tecate, I’m extremely happy with them and it’s a great responsibility and it’s a great campaign, as well. I’m very excited, and I’m very happy for what they have done for me.
But look, my whole thing is I want to be a legend. I want to be a legend, and I train hard so I can do legendary things in boxing, and that’s what I train for; and these deals come, and I’m very thankful.
Q. In the 30-day weigh-in, we saw you were somewhere around 162 pounds. Does that indicate that you’re going to be a lighter, faster Canelo; maybe getting ready for the Khan fight because he’s a fast fighter?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I hope so. I hope so. I hope that really does happen that I am faster.
Look, what I’m doing, I’m working hard. I’m doing my work and working hard. Obviously we’re concentrating on the style that Amir has. That’s part of my work.
But I’m working hard, and we won’t know until fight night how I feel or how I come out. But as of right now, I’m just working hard and trying to adjust to the game plan and get ready for the style that Amir is going to bring.
Q. Obviously everybody is talking about the Golovkin fight. Oscar says it’s not if; it’s when. What are you thinking and what would you like to see about the fight? When will you be ready for Golovkin?
CANELO ALVAREZ: It’s in my future plans. It’s definitely in my future plans. I want to have that fight. I want to give that to the fans. I’m just not sure when.
Right now I’m focused on Amir Khan. That’s my fight. I want to fight three times this year. That’s my goal. That’s my plan. But anything can happen in this fight with Amir Khan. So sometimes you have a plan and it changes, so I’m focused 100 percent on Amir Khan and we’ll see right after that.
Q. Eddy, would it surprise you if Canelo ends up with knockout in this fight, and would that validate you being Trainer of the Year finally? 2015 they gave it to Sanchez.
EDDY REYNOSO: We’re training hard. He’s a very good fighter. He has a very good defense. We’ll see what happens in the fight. We don’t look for that to happen.
As far as for the Trainer of the Year, look, I do my job and I keep advancing little by little and all I can do is work hard and I leave that up to other people to decide.
Q. Obviously Canelo was passed over for Fighter of the Year. He had some great performances; one that comes to mind is the Kirkland fight. How do you feel about that, Oscar? Do you think that there should be some reform on the way its picked? He obviously deserved it.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Everyone has their own opinion. You know, I think that Saul has been doing a wonderful job as a fighter.
But look, it’s only the beginning. I think Canelo is going to have many, many more opportunities to win Fighter of the Year.
Q. Do you think it was an injustice that you didn’t win the Fighter of the Year? And do you even care about that?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Look, it’s nice. It’s nice winning awards. It’s something that’s nice. But I don’t think about that.
What I worry about is winning fights. At the end of the day, you have to win fights, and that’s what really counts and that’s what I train for and that’s what I work hard for, is to win fights.
The last thing I worry about is winning awards. I concentrate on winning fights.
Q. Now that Floyd is out of the picture and you’re the one that’s going to be fighting for the first time at the T-Mobile Arena, do you think that you can become the next king of boxing or the king of Las Vegas for boxing, and how do you feel about opening up the T-Mobile Arena?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Look, I don’t give myself titles. I don’t think of that. What I do is I do my job. If other people want to say that I’m the next person in boxing or call me or give me titles, then that’s up to them. That’s their opinion.
As far as fighting for the T-Mobile Arena, it’s a big honor. It’s a huge honor. It’s something new in my career, something that’s going to go down as one of the best arenas for boxing. I think there’s going to be some great fights there, and to be the first one, it means so much for me and I’m very happy and I’m honored.
Q. If you guys do not face GGG in the fall, is it an option to have a rematch with Miguel Cotto, just based on how well box office-wise that fight did?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, we’re obviously focused on May 7. I mean, look, we’re not going to talk about possible opponents. But we strongly feel that, look, Amir Khan possesses a real threat and we have to focus on Amir Khan, and after the fight, then we’ll sit down once again and decide what we’re going to do.
Q. But is that a possible option, though, just going forward?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: It might be.
Q. One thing about what you were saying, with you say that you’re not committed to doing the GGG fight in the fall, that you’re not sure what will happen; can you explain why you’re not committed to it at this point and why you’re not certain that will be his next fight?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, look, because in boxing, you never know what’s going to happen. I cannot talk to you and say that Amir Khan is an easy fight, because it’s not. You know, there’s a rematch clause in place for a reason because, you know, Amir Khan is a real threat.
I cannot commit to something, I mean, if this fight hasn’t even happened.
Q. Just again, given all this talk about who you might face after May 7, because most people do believe that you’ll be able to take Amir, what do you think about giving up your WBC belt if you didn’t play GGG?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I’m not even thinking about that. I’m preparing for this fight on May 7. I’m not even thinking about that.
After the fight, we’ll see. We’ll decide and see what’s the best course of action. But right now, it’s not even in my mind. Hasn’t even crossed my mind. I don’t know.
Q. What do you worry about with Khan when you analyze the matchup? What things worry you for this fight?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Well, he’s a fighter that’s very fast. He’s explosive. He’s a very, very good fighter. He’s fast, explosive. That’s why I’m training so hard. I want to be 100 percent because I don’t like surprises.
Q. It’s pretty wide open for pound-for-pound fighter in the world. You’re obviously somebody that could be considered that. Is that something you think about or that you want? In the past you’ve said that you’re not worried about titles you’re given; that you don’t worry about that stuff. But is this something that personally you would like to achieve, become pound-for-pound fighter, best fighter in the world?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Of course it’s something that I would like. Of course I would love to be considered the best fighter pound-for-pound. That’s the reason why I train so hard. That’s the reason why I want to fight the best.
But it’s not for me to say. It’s the public. If the public considers me that or I’m named pound for pound the best fighter, that’s great. But yeah, that’s something I would love to attain.
Q. Now that Floyd and Manny are retired, can Canelo be the top draw? Can he be the top guy in boxing, Pay-Per-View-wise, weight-wise. Obviously he’s opening up the T-Mobile Arena which is a great new facility. Oscar, do you consider that he could be the top draw in boxing?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Yes, I think that Saul could be considered not only the top draw but the most popular around the world. He’s already proved it.
You know, he broke records when he fought against Floyd Mayweather, so he’s already been there. He’s done that. So of course, I think that he is, and he’s going to continue to be, the top draw in boxing.
Q. With all due respect, you as a young boy, you wanted to always come in boxing and fight the best. Now that you’re at the top, everybody wants to come and fight you now. They want to treat you like a piñata and everybody wants to come and hit you and take their turn with you. How do you feel about that? Does that motivate you? What do you feel?
CANELO ALVAREZ: It’s a great motivation for me. It has a lot to say that everybody wants to come and try to take their turn and try to beat me. That’s why I train so hard; so that it doesn’t happen. So I’m always prepared. Yeah, it’s a big motivation for me.
Q. Obviously you’re a very good fighter: You can do it all, you can box, you can punch, you can stand toe-to-toe in a fight. What else is needed to make you a complete fighter, to make you an elite fighter? What does your team have to do or work on?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I think that obviously, look, there’s always going to be people that criticize me. They are always going to have tests and I have to pass different tests. And every fight, I keep learning and I keep getting better and I pass all the tests. There’s people that are always going to put more tests in front of me.
You know, I just keep — I have to keep doing what I’m doing, and I’m satisfying myself. Obviously I’m getting better each time out there.
I think about the people that are criticizing me that are with me; that are helping me get better that know what I’ve accomplished and where I come from, and that’s what’s important to me and that’s what I concentrate on.
Q. There’s comments that Oscar made in the British papers that Khan has a very good chance of winning and he could easily win the fight.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: No, that’s not what I said.
You know, this fight is a tough fight, just like any other fight, and you have to be prepared and you have to be ready, because you never know what’s going to happen in the ring.
Q. A lot of people are talking about the weight, the difference in weight. What do you feel about the difference in weight and what advantages do you have?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Look, I don’t think about that. I don’t worry about that. I just train hard. I think about having a great preparation and being ready for the fight.
I’ll repeat it again, I don’t like surprises, so I don’t think about that stuff. Obviously both of us are going to have our advantages, and the key thing is during the fight to take advantage of those advantages.
Q. Everybody is talking about the advantages of the fight. Do you think that you can possibly win by a knockout?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I feel that I’m obligated to win the fight, not necessarily to win by knockout, but to win the fight. That’s why I train hard, so I can win this fight. I don’t think about the knockout.
Q. By beating Cotto, do you think you gained some credibility that you might have lost when you lost to Mayweather? And have you ever faced anybody with the same style as Amir Khan?
CANELO ALVAREZ: As far as losing to Floyd, I don’t think I lost any credibility. You know, to go in there and perform like I did against Floyd at 22 years old, I don’t think I lost any credibility at all.
You know, I lost to a guy that nobody beat. Nobody was able to beat. None of the big names were able to beat him, so I don’t think I lost any credibility.
As far as beating Miguel Cotto, what it did, it gave me confidence. And it was historic for me, for my career, and it gave me a lot of confidence: A fighter, the stature of Miguel Cotto, the experience he has, the brand, the name, everything. It just gave me a lot of confidence and it’s something that was historic for me.
Look, I think I faced every kind of style. There’s so many different styles I’ve faced. I’ve faced people like that that are fast, elusive. I have the experience to be victorious May 7. I think it’s something that he doesn’t bring anything different that I haven’t faced before in the past to the table.
Obviously I have to be prepared, but yes, I have faced guys like him before.
Q. Eddy, obviously everybody is dangerous. Are you worried about the Amir Khan style? Are you worried or are you confident about his style?
EDDY REYNOSO: No, I think everybody’s dangerous. Anybody you face in the ring is dangerous. Amir Khan has a lot of qualities. That’s the reason why we’re training hard, and we’re getting prepared because he’s got many qualities and he can be a dangerous fighter.
Q. What has changed for you since your loss from Floyd Mayweather?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Many things have changed. I’m more experienced now. I’m more of a complete fighter. I’ve learned so much in that fight. So many things have changed. I think I have more confidence around the ring, so there’s many things that have changed.
Q. What is it that makes Canelo successful, not only inside of the ring but outside of the ring?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: I think the desire is very, very important. I admire desire. He’s got so much desire, not only inside the ring but outside of the ring. He’s very focused and he takes it serious. He takes it very, very serious.
He works hard at his craft, so I think that’s something that I admire and you have to really love that about him.
Q. You’re only 25 years old. Is the best yet to come?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Of course there is. There’s many more things and many more goals. I have so much more that I want to accomplish in the sport. I think that I can reach many of them. I just have to concentrate more and keep working hard at my craft.
I just want to thank everybody for all your support and thank you so much for taking time to be on this call. I want to obviously invite everybody to see the fight May 7, and I just want to thank everybody for all the support. Thank you so much.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Thank you to all the media. We greatly appreciate it. And please mark your calendars, Monday, April 25, we have Canelo’s media work out in San Diego. Additional details will be coming soon, but that is April 25 will be Canelo Álvarez’s media workout in San Diego. Thank you very much.
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Canelo vs. Khan, a 12-round fight for Canelo’s WBC, Ring Magazine and Lineal Middleweight World Championships, is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Canelo Promotions and sponsored by “Cerveza Tecate, Born Bold”, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Casa Mexico Tequila, DOOM® — Fight Like Hell on May 13, and HANDS OF STONE: The True Story of Roberto Duran, in theaters this August! David Lemieux vs. Glen Tapia is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Eye of the Tiger Management and Patrick Teixeira vs. Curtis Stevens is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Main Events. The mega-event will take place Saturday, May 7 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.
Tickets priced at $1,500, $1,000, $800, $600, $400, $250 and $150, not including applicable service charges and taxes, with a total ticket limit of 12 per person (a limit of 10 per person at the $1,500, $1,000, $800, $600 and $400 price levels and a limit of two  per person at the $250 and $150 price level) are on sale now. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call 888-9-AXS-TIX (888-929-7849). Tickets also will be available for purchase at www.t-mobilearena.com or www.axs.com.
An all-new edition of HBO’s Emmy-Award-winning reality series “24/7” premieres Saturday, April 23 at 12:15 a.m. ET/9:15 p.m. PT with episode one of “24/7 Canelo/Khan.” Liev Schreiber narrates.