David Benavidez should fight Beterbiev vs. Smith winner says Teddy Atlas

05/25/2022 - By Jeff Sorby - Comments

Teddy Atlas wants David Benavidez to face the winner of the light heavyweight unification fight between Artur Beterbiev and Joe Smith Jr in his next fight.

According to Atlas, Benavidez (26-0, 23 KOs) has cleaned out the 168-lb division, and he should move up in weight to take on 175-lb champions Beterbiev or Smith. If not them, Atlas would like to see Benavidez face Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez.

Benavidez can still make weight at 168, as we saw with his victory over David Lemieux last Saturday in their fight for the interim WBC super-middleweight title.

The fights that Benavidez wants are against Canelo Alvarez, Caleb Plant, Jermall Charlo, and David Morrell Jr.

“Benavidez had a guy in there with him where he couldn’t help but look good,” said Teddy Atlas to The Fight about last Saturday’s third-round knockout win by Benavidez over David Lemieux.

“Yeah, he looked good against a guy that was there to look good with that was made to order for Benavidez. I’m not saying, ‘Don’t like Benavidez.’ I like him.

I don’t want to see Benavidez with these kinds of guys. I want to see him fight other guys. I wouldn’t mind him fighting Gilberto Ramirez. People forgot about that guy.

“He was already a super middleweight champion, so we know he came come back down. He moved up to light heavyweight Gilberto Ramirez. Let him fight the winner of Joe Smith and Beterbiev.

“Canelo can’t be called the best in that division until he fights Benavidez. I would love to see Canelo fight Benavidez. He’s only 25-years-old. He can move up to light heavyweight.

“I don’t want him to waste time at super middleweight. He’s cleaned it out,” said Atlas about Benavidez.

“If I can tell you what’s going to happen with Caleb Plant and Saunders, that Canelo is going to knock them out, then I can tell you the same thing is going to happen with Benavidez,” said Atlas when it was suggested that Benavidez fight Plant next.

“They’re not strong enough or equipped to deal with Benavidez’s abilities, size, strength, everything that he brings into the ring. It’s not competitive.

“If they could get Demetrius Andrade, he’s an undefeated middleweight. He doesn’t get huge attention or make the huge money as some of these others.

“His style is boring; he’s not electric, he’s undefeated, an Olympian, he knows how to fight and a defensive-minded guy in certain ways.

He’s got the kind of body that could go up to super middleweight, and he’s always complaining that he’s not getting a big fight. So here’s a way for him to get a big fight by fighting Benavidez.

“Benavidez won’t do it because nobody is clamoring to get to see Andrade. He could get the fight, and you could see how good he is, not just how boring he is. There’s no reason for Benavidez to fight this guy because he’s not going to get rich fighting him. Nobody cares. Only the boxing insiders care.

“It’s a lose-lose proposition for Benavidez. If he beats him, the guy was too small, and if he struggles with him, it looks bad for him,” said Atlas.

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