Daniel Jacobs (35-2, 29KOs) awaits Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez (51-1-2, 35KOs) on May 4, but the Mexican has big plans to fight Callum Smith (25-0, 18KOs) at Wembley Stadium in 2019.
The three-weight world champion from Jalisco was last seen in the ring in December 2018, as he tore through Liverpool's Rocky Fielding in three-rounds, but Callum Smith, who holds the WBA's 'Super' title managed to knock out Fielding in a single round. Alverez ripped the WBA 'Regular' super-middleweight belt away from the Liverpudlian that night in Madison Square Garden but 'Mundo', also from Liverpool, is widely regarded as the real WBA champion and the top fighter at 168lbs after winning the World Boxing Super Series tournament and knocking out George Groves in the final to send him into retirement.
Jabs, straights, hooks, uppercuts... there's no doubt that the stylish Canelo has it all. He's a pound-for-pound superstar and biggest draw in the world of boxing right now. His eye-pleasing style makes him the man of the moment and viewers tune in to watch that excitement when he fights. His next clash at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas will receive a very high viewership on the Mexican 'Cinco de Mayo' holiday against the 'Miracle Man', who some still believe deserved the decision against the formidable Gennady Golovkin when they fought back in March 2017, despite 'GGG' winning unanimously on the scorecards. Jacobs has since reeled off a trio of triumphs over unbeaten prospects with a combined record of 66-0, claiming the IBF strap in his last fight with Sergiy Derevyanchenko, which he'll lay on the line against Canelo.
Love him or hate him, UK fight fans will be in their element if the Guadalajara man was to ever grace our shores to fight one of our own. He gives it all in the ring with superb head-body combinations, speed, punching power and accuracy. On top of that, he has a tough neck and chin and has never been knocked out, despite being wobbled early on his career in 2010. One slight shake in 54 fights tells us he is one tough Mexican.
Over the years, he has perfected his craft and shown improvements fight on fight. In 15 years of punching for pay, he has gradually improved his style and gained a lot of experience from facing top fighters. Yet, there are still a lot of challenges available to him, other than Smith, most notably the lucrative trilogy with Golovkin. On May 4, he will put those nurtured skills to the test against Jacobs and he is favourite to win the fight.
Canelo started boxing when he was only 11-years-old. After a successful amateur career (44-2), winning the Junior Mexican National Championship in 2005, he turned pro at the age of just 15. He was very young but his trainers and team could not find decent and suitable opponents so they had no other choice than to turn over early.
He made a successful pro debut in 2005 with a knockout win. 54 fights later, his record is highly impressive - 51 wins (35 KOs), one loss and two draws. Canelo has experienced fighting in four different weight divisions and holds several titles. Against Jacobs, he will defend the belts he took from Golovkin - the WBA 'Super', WBC, The Ring and lineal middleweight titles. His opponent brings the IBF title to the table.
In 2011, he faced Mattew Hatton, winning the vacant WBC super-welterweight title. He defended it six times over two years against strong opponents like Shane Mosley and Austin Trout. Against the latter, he won the WBA super-welterweight title which he did not hold for very long.
At that time, the confident 23-year-old (42-0-1) thought he was ready to take on the biggest challenge, but on his 44th fight, he would suffer his first and only loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. On that humbling night in Las Vegas in September 2013, Canelo learned the hard way that he was not yet a complete fighter and had stepped up too soon. Mayweather taught him a boxing lesson and showed that it is useless to be powerful if you cannot land your punches or even catch up to your opponent. 'Money' simply outclassed a work-in-progress on the night.
However, the Mexican quickly got back on his feet and took on new challenges. This loss made him conscious of his flaws and he quietly worked on them, coming back stronger with a better, more complete style. He became sharper, improved his defense and dodging, and learned to punch with more accuracy. He then defeated Erislandy Lara, James Kirkland, Miguel Cotto and Amir Khan, to name a few.
After this successful comeback, he faced fearsome Kazakh Gennady Golovkin. The first fight ended in a draw and Canelo won the second meeting by majority decision. Whether the results were justified or not is still open to debate and opinions continue to vary on the matter. What is important though is that he accepted the challenge and GGG, who was undefeated until then, suffered his first and only career loss.
He moved up a weight class in his last fight to face Rocky Fielding to land the WBA (Regular) super-middleweight title with a third-round KO. In the same division, Callum Smith is the undisputed champion who also knocked out Fielding, but two rounds quicker.
If the gauntlett was laid down to Callum Smith, then he would accept it in a heartbeat, he says, "Yeah of course. If he stays at super-middle, then I'll definitely be putting my name in the hat for his next fight at the weight."
Smith and Canelo are both competing on the DAZN streaming service, where their respective promoters have content deals, so matching them against each other should be no problem.
Golden Boy promoter Oscar De La Hoya has already expressed his desire in making the mega-fight hapen, "Canelo is the biggest name in boxing and we are looking abroad to build him into a global super-star."
While Eric Gomez, president of Golden Boy, added: "We are now very open to going to the UK, probably to fight Callum. Wembley would be huge for us."
In the meantime, all eyes are on his next bout against Daniel Jacobs. After that fight, it will be interesting to see Canelo's next move. The Mexican boxer, who is still only 28-years-old, is in his prime and still has an exciting future ahead.