- The WBC previously said that David Benavidez will be Canelo’s next bout
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Any hints that Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez is on the downside of his career were extinguished in Las Vegas on Saturday as the face of boxing dismantled challenger Jermell Charlo for an easy unanimous-decision victory.
To his credit, Charlo wasn’t knocked out and never appeared to be overwhelmed, outside of the seventh round when he was forced to take a knee.
Charlo even had a few impressive moments in the fourth and fifth rounds, but ultimately was outclassed by Canelo, who had success with his jab throughout the night.
More to follow…
Canelo pummeled Charlo along the ropes for much of the fight on Saturday in Las Vegas
Alvarez applied pressure and kept Charlo against the ropes for large periods of the fight
Charlo was solid in the fourth and fifth rounds, but couldn’t hang with Canelo for all 12
Alvarez has spent the last decade making Las Vegas his second home.
He came here to fight Jose Cotto on May 10, 2010, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, and right away Alvarez felt the support from his Mexican compatriots.
Alvarez won that fight by technical knockout in the second round, the first of 17 trips to Las Vegas.
‘I think it’s the capital of boxing,’ Alvarez said of Las Vegas before the fight. ‘I just feel (it’s) like coming home because a lot of Mexicans go there and support me. So that’s why I like fighting in Vegas, and there’s a lot of history there.’
The 33-year-old Alvarez has been a big part of that history, whether it’s beating Gennadiy Golovkin twice with another fight ending in a split draw, or defeating Shane Mosley, Daniel Jacobs or Sergey Kovalev. His favorite memory is of the one-sided unanimous decision over Miguel Cotto in November 2015.
‘He’s a great champion,’ Alvarez said in the ring after that fight, ‘but now it’s my era.’
WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman previously declared David Benavidez will be Canelo’s mandatory challenger for the super middleweight belt.
But Alvarez has not committed to facing Benavidez, a 26-year-old who is 27-0 with all but four by knockout. If Alvarez beats Charlo and turns down Benavidez, the WBC likely would vacate his championship.
‘I’m going to win (versus Charlo), but I don’t know what is next,’ Alvarez said. ‘I’m going to sit down with my team and talk about it because I’m 100% focused on this fight.’
As for his potential options post-Charlo, Alvarez said his intention would be to ‘make the best fights out there. We will see after this fight.’
Canelo did lose by unanimous decision to Dmitry Bivol in May 2022, though all three judges had the fight close at 115-113. Alvarez rebounded with a unanimous decision a year ago over Golovkin and then easily beat John Ryder in May on the scorecards. But Triple G had seen his best boxing days, and Ryder was simply outclassed.