Canelo Alvarez isn’t worried about Billy Joe Saunders potentially pulling out of their fight this Saturday over a disagreement about the size of the ring at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Canelo (55-1-2, 37 KOs) says Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) will fight him on Saturday, and he’s not interested in discussing who could be brought in as a last-minute replacement.
Billy Joe, 31, and his father, Tom, insist that they won’t fight unless Canelo agrees to fight in a 22-foot ring rather than a 20-footer. Tom says the negotiations have broken down completely with Canelo’s team, and he was told to take a flight home.
Canelo is willing to fight Saunders in a 20-foot ring, but not a 22-footer as he wants. Tom says they wanted a 24-foot ring, but they decided to come down two feet to 22, but they won’t budge from that number.
Although the fight is a unification, WBA/WBC super middleweight champion Canelo is the clear A-side over WBO champ Saunders, and if Billy Joe thinks he’s going to pressure the Mexican star into yielding to his demands for a 22-foot ring, he could be wasting his breath.
— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) May 4, 2021
“He has to fight Saturday, the fight is going to happen, that’s not a problem,” said Canelo on Tuesday to the media in addressing whether Saunders will pull out.
“The truth is, I don’t care about the size of the ring. I’m going to go in there and do my job,” said Canelo about Saunders complaining about not getting the 22-foot ring that he wants for the fight.
“It’s not the only excuse that he’s had, he’s had plenty of excuses. I’m just going to go in there and do what I got to do.
“Nothing frustrates me. I’m just focused on winning on Saturday. I’m calm,” said Canelo.
It’s unclear how much money it would cost Saunders if he pulls out of the fight over the ring size issue. There’s only Saunders’ hefty purse that he would be losing for the fight, but there could be a potential lawsuit.
As far as a substitute to replace Saunders if he decides to back out of the fight, John ‘Gorilla’ Ryder is being mentioned as a possible opponent. He would have to fly over from the UK, and it’s unclear how the issues with the testing will be conducted if he comes over this week if there’s no compromise.