By Rick Reeno
Richard Schaefer, CEO for Golden Boy Promotions, has advised BoxingScene.com that a deal could be finalized as early as this week for Saul "Canelo" Alvarez's first defense of the WBC junior middleweight title against mandatory challenger Ryan Rhodes (45-4, 31KOs). Alvarez (36-0, 26KOs) will defend against Rhodes on June 18 in Guadalajara, Mexico. Discussions are still ongoing to determine whether or not the fight is going to land on regular HBO. There is a possibility that Alvarez-Rhodes will headline an HBO pay-per-view event.
"I believe that this week we are going to get Rhodes signed. He's a very dangerous opponent; a natural junior middleweight and he's also had several fights at middleweight as well. A big, strong guy and clearly, by far, the most dangerous opponent that Canelo has fought," Schaefer told BoxingScene.com.
"I actually had calls from people in the boxing business and they suggested that we don't do the fight [because of the danger]. I discussed it with [Golden Boy President] Oscar [De La Hoya] and he said 'since when has being world champion ever been easy?' I think it will happen. It will be televised [in the United States]. This week I hope to finalize the television arrangements."