Canelo reportedly parts with PBC, targets Berlanga and Munguia

Fighting

In not-entirely-unexpected news, Salvador Rodriguez and Mike Coppinger each report that Canelo Alvarez has parted ways with Premier Boxing Champions after just one fight of their three-fight deal. The undisputed super middleweight champion “could now return to DAZN,” where a May fight with Edgar Berlanga and September fight with Jaime Munguia are “in play.”

Alvarez’s (60-2-2, 39 KO) last appearance on the network saw him beat John Ryder by unanimous decision in May, his sole mandatory defense since completing his belt collection in 2021. After jumping ship to PBC, he’d intended to fight Jermall Charlo the following September, but had to settle for dominating Jermell instead.

Recent rumblings claimed the Jermall fight was back on the table for this coming May, though Charlo himself denied it and PBC reportedly demanded Canelo fight Munguia (43-0, 34 KO) instead. Whatever the case, it looks as though their partnership is over before it ever really began.

As I said, this isn’t particularly shocking. Canelo demands an exorbitant guaranteed purse, and with the loss of PBC’s Showtime partnership, the money just wasn’t there for anything but a guaranteed smash hit. You could argue that Munguia and long-ducked mandatory challenger David Benavidez fit that bill, but it’s the Canelo Show, after all; if what he says doesn’t go, he’ll just go instead.

With the understanding that Mauricio Sulaiman will never, ever force Canelo’s hand, I can stomach the Munguia fight. I’d have preferred David Morrell as far as second choices go, but Munguia’s tons of fun and seems to have really come into his own at 168. Between the guaranteed entertainment, the Mexican vs Mexican angle, the fact that Munguia stopped Ryder when Canelo couldn’t, it’s as marketable a fight as they come.

Berlanga (22-0, 17 KO), on the other hand, is just a pathetic choice. Outside of Avni Yildirim, who had the excuse of being a mandatory challenger, he’d be Canelo’s worst opponent since at least Rocky Fielding in 2018. I’ll save any more invective for when/if it’s officially announced and content myself with saying that the satisfaction of watching Berlanga get his comeuppance in no way polishes that turd.

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