One of the undisputed, no questions asked, greatest boxers to ever grace combat sports is Canelo Alvarez (55-1-2, 37 KOs). The Mexican maestro, who is currently the WBC and WBA (Super) super middleweight champion of the world, has been at the peak of his career in the past few years.
As of now, Canelo’s focus is on Saturday when he squares off against WBO titleholder and unbeaten British pugilist Billy Joe Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) at the AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas, which will unify all three belts.
Canelo, who is the clear favorite to win the fight, will be just one fight away to unify all four major titles at 168 if he can also subsequently conquer IBF champion Caleb Plant later this year, which will be a milestone in his 16-year-long professional career as well as in the Mexican boxing history.
But what’s next for Canelo?
As “Cinnamon” himself ponders on his future, he believes he can continue to don the gloves for seven years minimum, or he can also part away from boxing if he feels like it.
However, becoming the undisputed champion at 168 has been a long-term plan for Canelo before any notion of retirement, and dominating Saunders this weekend comes as the short-term plan in that goal.
“We have always been open about what are short and long term plans have been, I want to unify the 168lb division, and Caleb Plant would be next in line to secure that short term goal if successful against Billy Joe Saunders,” Canelo said via a translator at a recent media conference.
“The goal is to be undisputed at 168lbs and then we’ll see. I think I could stay at Super-Middleweight until the end of my career,” the 30-year-old went on, “I think I have about seven years left until I retire, but I’m listening to my body and when it tells me to quit, I’ll quit.”
The fight was on the verge of cancellation after Saunders and his team raised a concern about the ring size for the fight, but the Briton, who recently claimed that he will be giving Canelo some “boxing lessons” in the squared circle, revealed that the issue was sorted.
Nonetheless, nothing of it has shifted Canelo’s focus from a triumph this weekend, and is least bothered about any “excuses” his adversary puts up.
“Nothing frustrates me, I am just focused on winning on Saturday. He has to fight me on Saturday, that has to happen, it’s not a problem,” asserted Canelo, “I don’t care about anything; I am just going to go in there and do my job. Saunders has come up with other excuses, he’s had plenty of excuses, but I am just going to go in there and do what I have to do.”