Canelo Alvarez ponders fights with Jermall Charlo, Dmitry Bivol and trilogy with Gennady Golovkin

Every time Canelo Alvarez prepares to select his next opponent, the fate of boxers in multiple weight divisions hangs in the balance.

Who – and what weight – Canelo will fight next has not yet been decided, but sources told ESPN that Alvarez has received two lucrative offers that rank as his top options.

Al Haymon’s PBC recently extended a one-fight offer to Alvarez for a May 7 defense of his undisputed super middleweight championship against middleweight titleholder Jermall Charlo, sources said.

The other offer came from Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing, a proposed two-fight deal in which Canelo would face light-heavyweight titleholder Dmitry Bivol on May 7, according to sources. The second fight: A highly anticipated trilogy battle between Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin on September 17, but this time with 168 pounds for Alvarez’s four belts.

ESPN’s No. 1 pound-for-pound boxer prefers to honor his native country and fight whenever possible during the Cinco De Mayo weekend and Mexican Independence weekend in September.

Right now, Alvarez (57-1-2, 39 KOs) has plenty of time to decide which way to go for those dates. The promotion for most top-level fights starts eight weeks, giving Alvarez at least a month to weigh these two options and whatever other offers are sure to come his way.

Alvarez, 31, is currently focused on preparations for the Pebble Beach Pro-Am golf tournament starting next week.

After that, he’ll have plenty to think about. He has expressed on numerous occasions how much he enjoys being a promotional free agent and the flexibility that comes with it. The Boxing star signed an 11-fight, $365 million deal with DAZN in 2018, shortly after beating GGG in a September rematch headlined by HBO PPV.

But after just three fights, Alvarez sued his longtime promoter, Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions, and DAZN. The suit was settled and Canelo was given his freedom. He stayed on DAZN on a one-fight deal with Hearn for a win over Callum Smith in December 2020, then rose again for a two-fight pact that saw wins over Avni Yildirim and Billy Joe Saunders.

After the fight with Saunders in May 2021, Alvarez signed a one-fight deal with PBC for a Showtime PPV against Caleb Plant in November. Alvarez won the undisputed 168 pound championship by 11th round TKO, earning a guaranteed $40 million.

If he chooses to stay with PBC for his next fight, he will face a formidable challenge against Charlo, ESPN’s No. 1 Middleweight. The twin brother of united 154 pound champion Jermell, Jermall would climb eight pounds for the chance. It has a big frame for a 160-pounder and seems eager to test itself in a new weight class.

Fighting out of Houston, 31 year old Charlo (31-0, 22 KOs) is a willing trash-talker who possesses an excellent power jab. He has only fought once in the last two years, decision wins over Juan Macias Montiel and Sergiy Derevyanchenko.

Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs) would give Canelo a chance to chase a second title regime at 175 pounds. The 31-year-old native of Russia is a tricky boxer who is adept at controlling the range with his jab. What he hasn’t done lately is entertain, with two decision wins in 2021 with little action.

The biggest prize of all, at least commercially, is a third meeting with Alvarez’s rival, GGG. The pair of future Hall of Famers fought a tough draw in their 2017 fight for the middleweight championship before Alvarez secured a majority decision a year later in another highly contested bout.

Both fights produced over $1 million pay-per-view purchases and over $20 million in cash receipts. Golovkin (411-1, 36 KOs) has expressed his willingness to fight Alvarez for the third time on numerous occasions. As he approaches his 40th birthday, time is running out.

He was about to face Ryota Murata in a middleweight title unification in Japan last month, but COVID restrictions forced the fight to be postponed. The match is expected to be rescheduled in the spring; GGG would, of course, have to beat Murata to keep the hopes of an Alvarez fight alive, whichever path Canelo chooses.

Canelo could always choose something completely different. His trainer and manager, Eddy Reynoso, expressed interest in a cruiserweight move for a shot at the WBC title. That title is up for grabs this weekend as Ilunga Makabu defends against Thabiso Mchunu.

In the meantime, the boxing schedule has been put on hold in many divisions as fighters wait and see who will win the Canelo Alvarez sweepstakes.


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