Last Updated on 4 Dec 2021 4:12 pm (UK Time)
In a recent interview with Fight Hub TV, Floyd Mayweather Jr (50-0, 27 KOs) thinks Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (57-1-2, 39 KOs) is ducking David Benavidez (25-0, 22 KOs) by moving up to cruiserweight to fight Ilunga Makabu (28-2, 25 KOs).
“He’s going up to cruiserweight he’s fighting a guy that’s really not, you know the guy up and down but it is what it is, I mean if it was up to me like we keep on saying we want to see Benavidez, um Canelo hell of a fighter but my personal opinion he’s ducking Benavidez, you know this is my personal opinion”
Makabu is scheduled to defend his WBC cruiserweight title against Thabiso Mchunu (23-5, 13 KOs) on January 29th, 2022. If he is successful in his defense, we could see the man from Congo challenge Canelo in May 2022.
Floyd Mayweather Jr On Ilunga Makabu and David Benavidez
According to Mayweather Jr, Makabu used to struggle at the Mayweather Boxing Gym and believes Benavidez could do the same as Canelo and move up to cruiserweight and beat Makabu.
“I’m not knocking him but he’s going up to cruiserweight and that same guy used to be at the Mayweather boxing gym and the guys really getting the best of him, so if he’s going up to quote on quote cruiserweight, Benavidez could beat that same guy at 168”
Makabu is on a winning streak and hasn’t lost since 2016 when he fought Tony Bellew (30-3-1, 20 KOs) and was stopped in the third round. However, at the age of 34, he may be past his prime and the timing could be perfect for Canelo to face him for the WBC cruiserweight championship.
On the other hand, David Benavidez is ten years younger and is only 24 years old. After recent impressive performances against Ronald Ellis (18-2-2, 12 KOs) and Kyrone Davis (16-3-1, 6 KOs), some boxing experts rate the Mexican American highly and reinforce Mayweather’s comments that Canelo should fight him.
The undefeated, pound-for-pound legend went on to emphasise his distaste for Canelo’s potential fight with Makabu “Do I like this fight? Absolutely not, we want to see Benavidez, let’s make it happen”.
Floyd Mayweather Jr On Canelo’s Progress
When asked about Canelo’s progress as a fighter, Mayweather Jr said he was not impressed by his development.
“Same fighter, same fighter. It’s crazy, ‘Canelo in his prime, he’d have been a different fighter.’ When I fought him he was in his prime! I was the best in my 20s. When I fought Canelo I was almost 40.”
Canelo was only 23 years old when he fought Mayweather at the MGM grand for the WBC and WBA super welterweight championships. The vast difference in experience was a telling factor as Mayweather produced a boxing masterclass to hand Canelo his first professional defeat.
After losing to Mayweather in 2013 via majority decision, Canelo has gone from strength to strength by beating world-class boxers such as Gennadiy Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs), Miguel Cotto (41-6, 33 KOs), and Sergey Kovalev (34-4-1, 29 KOs). Not to mention, becoming the first-ever undisputed champion at 168 and capturing world titles at middleweight and light heavyweight.
The Mexican superstar is also the current pound-for-pound king on Ring Magazine and is one of the most popular boxers on the planet.
We will never know if Canelo would have beaten Mayweather if he was older and more experienced. Regardless, their bout reflected a passing of the boxing torch, where Mayweather was pound for pound number 1 and now Canelo has gone on to do the same.Embed from Getty Images
Floyd Mayweather Jr On Other Pound-For-Pound Fighters
Mayweather respects Canelo as a boxer but believes other outstanding fighters don’t get as much credit as they deserve.
“I like Canelo, I mean I like his work, but we’re forgetting about Jaron Ennis, we don’t talk about him, you know Errol Spence goes through some ups and downs throughout life, tragedies and he still get through it all. Terence Crawford go out there and do what he was supposed to do, he looked good, but we forget about these guys, we don’t talk about Tank go out there and do what he got to do”
Jaron Ennis (28-0, 26 KOs) is an up-and-coming fighter who has yet to be tested by a world-class opponent, still, so far he looks like a sensational talent who has incredible potential.
Terence Crawford (38-0, 29 KOs) and Errol Spence Jr (27-0, 21 KOs) have long been considered the two best welterweights in the world. With Crawford leaving Top Rank, there is a chance we could see this mouth-watering bout between these two heroes of the sport.
Whereas, Gervonta “Tank” Davis (25-0, 24 KOs) has shown superb knockout power and is looking to improve his resume by defending his WBA lightweight title against Isaac Cruz (22-1-1, 15 KOs).
Mayweather undoubtedly mentions some extremely talented fighters, nonetheless, Canelo is the current pound-for-pound king and will further enhance his reputation if he becomes a 5-weight world champion.