Undefeated Saul “Canelo” Alvarez was originally scheduled to face Paul “The Punisher” Williams on Sept. 15, but the fight was cancelled after the latter suffered a serious motorcycle accident.
Williams crashed his bike during the early hours of May 28, while trying to avoid an oncoming vehicle. The accident left Williams paralyzed from the waist down, removing any possibility of a September bout against Alvarez.
With Williams out, James Kirkland – who is the WBC’s mandatory challenger for Canelo’s light-middleweight belt – is the next logical choice for Alvarez, and a deal between the two is already in the works.
“We would very much like to see Kirkland accept this fight,” Alvarez’ manager José Reynoso said. “His team is analyzing the risks that are involved in fighting with Canelo. Otherwise, we will consider Austin Trout, if he does well this weekend.”
Kirkland was one of opponents Alvarez’ camp initially looked at for his Sept. 15 bout, but they eventually ended up signing a contract with Williams. It certainly was the right move, considering the fact that a fight between Williams and Canelo could have gone either way.
Kirkland isn’t exactly on the same level as Williams, but he does matchup nicely with Alvarez. Both are heavy punchers, and a fight between the two has a lot of potential for fireworks. However, I’m not yet ready to call Kirkland an elite level boxer, and his chances against Alvarez are pretty slim. Kirkland did indicate a desire to fight Alvarez during their earlier round of negotiations, so it’ll be interesting to see if he steps up to the plate and accepts the difficult challenge.
“He did a very, very beautiful job [against Mosley],” Kirkland said earlier during the month. “He came and put on a good show. He boxed, he was thinking, he threw combinations, he was smart. But I know one thing, when it comes to fighting a James Kirkland – what he brought to the table [against Mosley] – he’s got to put on a lot more [for me]. Because I’m strictly a 100% fighter. They just know what they are getting themselves into when they step in the ring with Kirkland.”
Miguel Rivera, “Team Canelo Eager To Finalize Deal With James Kirkland”
Luis Sandoval, “Kirkland Says Canelo Will Need ‘A lot More’ To Beat Him”
David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 9 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter.