Friday, September 22, 2023  |


Canelo-Plant undisputed title clash hits a snag, Golovkin trilogy imminent?

Photo by Tom Hogan
Fighters Network

According to The Athletic’s Lance Pugmire, DAZN recently reached out to former unified and current IBF middleweight titlist Gennadiy Golovkin to enquire whether he was available to fight Canelo Alvarez this fall.

“Ready, willing, and available,” the Kazakh responded.

Alvarez and Golovkin fought to a highly-controversial split draw in their first encounter in September 2017 and a rematch was scheduled for the following May. That fight was initially canceled when Canelo twice tested positive for the banned substance clenbuterol, but after months of mudslinging from both sides, Alvarez would eventually win the second fight via majority decision in September 2018.

Sources informed The Ring Tuesday afternoon that negotiations for a unification bout with the unified and Ring super middleweight world champion Alvarez and IBF titlist Caleb Plant had hit a snag. We were also tipped that Plant’s team at Premier Boxing Champions likely wanted the Mexican superstar to sign a multi-fight deal to box on their platforms.

Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn also confirmed the news on the DAZN Boxing Show.

“[PBC] would prefer to do a three-fight deal, obviously, with Canelo Alvarez,” he stated. “This is their opportunity to try and allure him to the network.

“I feel like Caleb Plant shouldn’t be a pawn in this. Caleb Plant is a guy that should get the best deal and the best opportunity for this fight, but unfortunately that’s boxing, but we’ll see where it goes.

But Hearn then admitted there isn’t much time to come up with an opponent for September.

“This week is the crunch week,” he added. “We have to make a decision this week. We have two or three other fights ready to go.”

And one of them is Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs). Last month, The Ring was first to report that he was in a dispute with DAZN over opponent selections. The streaming service pushed hard to get ‘GGG’ to fight WBO middleweight titlist Demetrius Andrade, but Golovkin refused to budge. The 39-year-old already has a fight lined up on New Year’s Eve against Japanese star Ryota Murata in Japan. Depending how a trilogy bout with Canelo turns out, that fight could potentially be in jeopardy.

Since signing a six-fight deal with DAZN in March 2019, Golovkin, who has not fought in nearly seven months, has defeated the likes of Steve Rolls, Sergiy Derevyanchenko to reclaim the vacant IBF title, and mandatory challenger Kamil Szeremeta.

Meanwhile Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) has continued to rack up more victories and titles. He moved up to light heavyweight in November 2019 and knocked out Sergey Kovalev in the 11th round to win a title in his third weight class. He then moved back down to 168 and unified the division, scoring victories over then-Ring world champion Callum Smith, Avni Yildirim, and most recently Billy Joe Saunders, who was brutally stopped in the eighth round on May 8.



The Canelo-Charlo clash is the cover story to the September 2023 issue of The Ring. Art by Richard T. Slone