Dmitry Bivol says his priority is fighting IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev, not giving Canelo Alvarez a rematch.
Bivol’s decision to go after the undisputed match against Beterbiev (18-0, 18 KOs) could make Canelo a delighted person because he no longer has to come up with an excuse for not fighting him again.
Canelo has already ducked the rematch with Bivol (21-0, 11 KOs) by facing Gennadiy Golovkin last September, and he’s now planning on fighting John Ryder next May.
One could surmise from the way Canelo keeps dodging the Bivol rematch he’d continue avoiding him by choosing someone else in September.
What’s interesting is how Bivol is getting mobbed by fans while attending fights in Southern California and Las Vegas.
The way fans have adopted Bivol as one of their own following his back-to-back victories over Canelo & Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez in 2022 has been miraculous.
You can argue that Bivol has taken over Canelo’s spot as the most popular fighter in North America. Canelo has seemingly dropped out of favor after his loss to Bivol, and poor performance against 40-year-old Gennadiy Golovkin last September.
Now that Bivol is saying that his priority is to fight Beterbiev in 2023, Canelo is off the hook and can breathe a sigh of relief that he doesn’t need to face the talented unbeaten WBA light heavyweight champion in a rematch next year.
“I’m happy. Thank you, guys,” said Dmitry Bivol to Fight Hub TV when asked how he feels being embraced by the fans after his wins over Canelo Alvarez & Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez.
“I want to be undisputed. That’s my goal,” Bivol continued. “My priority is to fight for another belts,” said Bivol when asked where fighting Canelo in a second fight lies in his priority levels.
The fight between Bivol and Beterbiev likely won’t take place until the second half of 2023, as Artur has a title defense against his WBO mandatory Anthony Yarde on January 28th. Then he’ll be out of action during Ramadan from March until April 21st.
“Of course, it’s a great fight. I would like to fight for his belts, and I know he wants to fight too. It’ll be a great fight. He’s a tough opponent,” said Bivol about his interest in fighting IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev for the undisputed championship at 175.
“It just looks easy, but it was hard fight,” said Bivol when told that he made it look easy beating Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez on November 5th.