Bivol Crowns Canelo “King Of 168,” Challenges Benavidez & Morrell To Earn Their Thrones
Dmitry Bivol says he sees Canelo Alvarez as still the best fighter in the super middleweight division because he has all the belts, which puts him ahead of David Benavidez and David Morrell Jr.
In WBA light heavyweight champion Bivol’s view, Benavidez and Bivol need to prove themselves by capturing belts before he can consider either of them to be the best in the 168-lb division.
Morrell has a better chance of grabbing the reins from Canelo than Benavidez, as he doesn’t look massive for the 168-lb division like ‘The Mexican Monster.’ Benavidez looks like a cadaver in making weight.
You can tell that he’s not long for the super middleweight division and will soon have to give up on his hopeless dream of getting a fight with Canelo.
Benavidez & Morrell must prove themselves
Whether Bivol is saying nice things about Canelo to curry favor with him to stay in his good graces to be considered for a rematch down the road is unknown.
It obviously makes sense for Bivol to pour on the praise of Canelo if he’s still harboring hopes of getting a rematch. Canelo is picking his opponents and can’t be forced into fighting anyone in the division.
Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs), the WBC interim super middleweight champion, has been trying to get a title shot against Canelo, but it hasn’t happened. Morrell (10-0, 9 KOs) has focused on trying to get a fight with Benavidez and hasn’t gotten anywhere.
Bivol is defending this Saturday night against IBO 175-lb champion Lyndon Arthur (23-1, 16 KOs) on December 23rd in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. If Bivol wins this fight and if IBF/WBC/WBO champion Artur Beterbiev is victorious against Calum Smith on January 13th, they’ll meet for the undisputed championship in 2024.
“He’s a good fighter. He has a good jab, a good right counter-punch, and he has a belt [IBO light heavyweight title]. I want his belt and I want to defend my belt, and I want to be active,” said Dmitry Bivol to Fight Hub TV about his opponent Lyndon Arthur for Saturday night in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Bivol has been given a stay-busy fight against Arthur for his first of a two-fight deal with the Saudis, which could culminate with him facing Beterbiev for all the marbles.
“Now, it’s very close, and in 2024, it could happen,” said Bivol about the undisputed light heavyweight championship fight between him and IBF, WBC & WBO 175-lb champion Beterbiev. “Yeah, we’re talking about Saudi. Saudi is very interested in making this fight happen.
Canelo still the best at 168
“I only saw the moment of the knockdown. It was a good fight. He showed very good,” said Bivol on David Benavidez’s recent win against Demetrius Andrade on November 25th on Showtime PPV.
“Sparring is very different from a fight. I had a lot of sparring when I wasn’t good when I was good. I wasn’t seeing the sparring like a fight,” said Bivol when asked how his sparring with Benavidez was when they trained together years ago.”
This week, someone posted a video of Benavidez sparring with someone that they claimed was Bivol. Benavidez was working the guy over, and it wasn’t competitive at all.
The sparring partner looked and fought nothing like Bivol, but they claimed it was him. If that was Bivol, he needs to stay away from Benavidez because he’s got his number.
“I’m checking. I’m just trying to do something. I have a mission for one sparring and I try to do it. Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it’s not. With Benavidez, it was good. I can’t say that something was not good,” said Bivol about sparring.
“I don’t know. Both of them good. It depends on how they would be prepared for the fight,” said Bivol on who wins between Canelo Alvarez and Benavidez.
If Benavidez doesn’t skip the 175-lb division and go straight to cruiserweight when he moves up in weight, we could see him fight Bivol. That would make for an interesting fight to see if he really did get the best of him in sparring, as some believe was the case.
“Now, it’s Canelo. He has the belts. Of course, he’s the best at 168,” said Bivol on who’s the best fighter at super middleweight. “They need to prove it, they need to win belts, and then we will see,” said Bivol on whether Benavidez or David Morrell are the best fighters at 168.
“We have rules. If you have belts, then you are the best,” said Bivol.