By: Sean Crose
“We promised to make this fight happen,” said Golden Boy head Oscar De La Hoya on Friday, “and now we are delivering it.”
De La Hoya was speaking of the just announced light heavyweight title throwdown between boxing’s biggest star, Canelo Alvarez, and Sergey Kovalev, famed terror of the light heavyweight division. “Historic fights have been a hallmark of this company,” De La Hoya continued, “and we are pleased to once again live up to the high expectations we’ve set for our fans.” The fight, which is set to go down November 2nd at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service.
“The best pound-for-pound fighter,” De La Hoya said, “is also boxing’s biggest star. Few fighters in boxing’s history can claim to be like Canelo Alvarez. Now, he’ll look to become a four-division world champion against one of the most dangerous fighters of recent years, and I’m certain that he will stop him. There’s no better home for this than on the DAZN platform or live at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.”
Canelo, who at the moment is both a middleweight and super middleweight titlist, was widely expected to have a third fight with Gennady Golovkin, who he’s previous fought on two controversial occasions for middleweight supremacy. The choice of Kovalev is a shrewd one, as it will be hard for people to accuse Canelo of ducking Golovkin when he’s making the jump up to 175 to face the aging, but still very dangerous, Kovalev.
“The second phase of my career is continuing just as we had planned,” said Canelo, “and that’s why we are continuing to make great fights to enter into the history books of boxing…that’s also why I’ve decided to jump two weight classes against one of the most feared champions of recent years. Kovalev is a dangerous puncher, and he’s naturally the bigger man, but that’s the kind of challenges and risks that I like to face.”
Kovalev’s promoter, Kathy Duva, had words of praise for the man presenting her fighter with the biggest opportunity – and payday – available. “Canelo is to be praised for asking to challenge Sergey Kovalev,” she said. “Win or lose, he will make history and Sergey is extremely pleased to get the chance to test his mettle against another future Hall of Famer…anyone who cares at all about the Sweet Science should circle November 2nd on their calendar. I have a feeling that this will be one for the ages.”
Talk of a Canelo-Kovalev matchup had been making the rounds for some time. Now that the deal is done, however, boxing has another big fight on its agenda during a very busy few months. For streaming service DAZN, the Canelo-Kovalev announcement is nothing but good news. “Canelo vs. Kovalev is a fascinating matchup between champions that will highlight our entire season of premium fights on DAZN over the next several months,” DAZN chairman John Skipper said. “Simply stated, this is the best schedule in boxing history.”