By: Hans Themistode
From the very beginning, Eddie Hearn has stood firmly in his belief that Billy Joe Saunders is the right man to dethrone unified super middleweight champion, Canelo Alvarez. Now, by no means does the long-time promoter believe that Saunders will actually win, but in terms of who has the best chance, Hearn won’t hesitate in mentioning the British native.
“Billy is a bit of a maverick,” said Hearn during an interview with FightHype.com. “He does have the ability to turn it on at the right time. So for me, he’s a guy that could rise to the occasion and he’ll have to beat Canelo Alvarez.”
For Saunders, the WBO super middleweight titlist is scheduled to take on Alvarez later on tonight at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas. If Alvarez does what many are expecting, he’ll be one title away from becoming the first undisputed super middleweight of all time.
With Caleb Plant in possession of the IBF title, Alvarez has already set his sights on him. While the Nashville, Tennessee native has looked impeccable during his career, including pitching a shutout against Caleb Truax in January earlier this year, Hearn doesn’t give Plant much of a chance of actually pulling off the win. Although he respects what he brings to the table, Hearn believes that the only person who can ultimately stop Alvarez from becoming the first undisputed super middleweight champion is Billy Joe Saunders.
“He (Saunders) has the style, brains, sharpness, movement and he’s a southpaw. I’m not sure he’s (Plant) as quick, as skillful and as clever. Personally, that’s my opinion.”
During the entire promotional buildup between Canelo and Saunders, the Mexican star has been greeted by loud cheers. That pattern continued during the pairs ceremonial weigh-ins yesterday as Saunders was met with boos from thousands of fans.
For Hearn, he’s watched closely as raucous crowds have gotten under the skin of Alvarez’s opponents. That, in turn, has left many of the world’s best boxers unable to perform under the brightest of lights. Although the vast majority of the 70,000 fans that will be jam-packed into AT&T Stadium will once again cheer loudly for Alvarez, Hearn is unconcerned with the amount of vitriol that will be aimed in the direction of Saunders. While fans are hoping to make the British star uncomfortable, Hearn actually believes he’ll feel right at home in the hostile environment.
“He’ll love it and that makes him dangerous as well. I think the great thing about Billy is you’ll get the best Billy on Saturday.”
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