By Sean Jones: Eddie Hearn says it doesn’t matter that the WBC has chosen to block Dmitry Bivol from fighting for Canelo Alvarez’s undisputed championship at 168 because it’s NOT going to happen anyway because their rematch will be at 175 for Bivol’s WBA title.
The WBC has taken the stance not to sanction fights involving Russian boxers fighting for their titles due to the Russia-Ukrainian war.
WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman said that Bivol didn’t approach them to ask that his case be reviewed. It’s possible that if Bivol did meet with the WBC, they could give him an exception.
Of course, that’s of no consequence if Canelo insists on the rematch taking place at 175. Canelo doesn’t want to put his four titles on the line at 168 because he says that it’ll appear that he’s trying to drain Bivol by having him come down to his weight class.
Some boxing fans believe that the true reason Canelo doesn’t want the fight at 168 is that if he loses to Bivol, he wouldn’t be able to blame his defeat on the weight.
That was a handy excuse that Canelo had to use last year after he lost to Bivol in May 2022. The other excuse was Canelo’s injured left hand. He was quick to mention that problem at the post-fight press conference.
Assuming that the Canelo-Bivol II rematch gets negotiated successfully, they’ll be meeting in September, likely on DAZN PPV once again.
“Bivol cannot participate in a WBC-sanctioned fight,” said Sulaiman to Izquierdazo. “As long as there is no boxing in Ukraine, there will not be boxing in Russia sanctioned by WBC.”
“I have a lot of respect for Mauricio [Sulaiman]. I don’t always agree with everything everybody always does, of course. I don’t like it, and maybe it’s because I know Dmitry and I admire, and I’m friends with him,” said Eddie Hearn when asked about his thoughts on WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman saying this week that he won’t sanction a fight between Canelo Alvarez and Dmitry Bivol for the WBC’s belt at 168 due to the sanctioning bodies ban of sanctioning fights involving Russian athletes.
“For us and for Canelo, he wants that rematch at 175 anyway, which is for Dmitry’s WBA [light heavyweight] title. So it really doesn’t matter, but it does make it a bigger problem making the undisputed fight at 168.
“I don’t see why a fighter like that with a heart like that, such a peaceful individual, should be punished for actions completely out of his control. I get it at the same time, and there are a lot of sports that have done it,” said Hearn.