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BOXING

Dmitry Bivol tempted by the challenge of going after Canelo Álvarez’s titles at 168 pounds

Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez wants a rematch with Dmitry Bivol next September, and touts the idea of a super middleweight clash

Edward Gonzaga
Estados UnidosUpdate:
El púgil mexicano firmó en 2018 uno de los contratos más altos de la historia del deporte con DAZN y Golden Boy por 11 peleas a cambio de 365 millones de euros. Sin embargo, en 2020, Canelo renunció al contrato que le vinculaba con ambas compañías.
Al BelloGetty Images

Russian WBA Light Heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol considers facing Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez a great opportunity, and is kicking around the idea of facing the Mexican at 168 pounds.

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Although the Russian acknowledges the immense challenge of coming down from his ideal weight to face the pugilist from Guadalajara, Mexico, the reward is so great that it may just be worth his while.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 05: Dmitrill Bivol celebrates victory with their team after the WBA Super World Light Heavyweight Title fight between Dmitrii Bivol and Gilberto Rmirez  at Etihad Arena on November 05, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
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ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 05: Dmitrill Bivol celebrates victory with their team after the WBA Super World Light Heavyweight Title fight between Dmitrii Bivol and Gilberto Rmirez at Etihad Arena on November 05, 2022 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)Francois NelGetty

The Russian champ was questioned about the possibility of a rematch with Canelo, and he briefly replied: “Of course,” before being interrupted by his manager Vadim Kornilov.

The eventual rematch could possibly take place next September, the date being floated around at by Álvarez’s camp. “Yes, it is interesting to fight for the belts. To fight at 168 for belts, it’s good. At 175lb Canelo said: ‘It’s not my weight class’, that’s the first thing I heard. Okay, not your weight class. If you want a rematch, let’s talk about 168,″ jabbed Bivol.

Both camps consider that a fight at super middleweight would give the advantage to the Mexican. “I would give Canelo the advantage, no doubt because that is his weight class. At least it would be a challenge for Dmitry and a motivation because if I beat him again at 175, would it be as interesting?” said Bivol.

Sep 17, 2022; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Canelo Alvarez (red trunks) and Gennadiy Golovkin (white trunks) box during a super middleweight championship bout at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
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Sep 17, 2022; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Canelo Alvarez (red trunks) and Gennadiy Golovkin (white trunks) box during a super middleweight championship bout at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports TPX IMAGES OF THE DAYJoe CamporealeUSA TODAY Sports

A fight at 168 pounds would put all of Canelo’s unified titles on the line, with the winner taking the IBF, WBA, WBC, and WBO belts. This could be an interesting option for the Russian, since any unification bout at Light Heavyweight would require Artur Beterbiev to be open to fighting Bivol, something that is not looking likely to shape up any time soon.

“It’s not my preference, but we could [do it],” admitted Bivol. “Four belts… it’s interesting fight. Why not?” He is quick to add, however, “But remember, I am light heavyweight. This is my weight.” So while he may be open to the possibility, it may not be wise to hold your breath.

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