Demetrius Andrade can’t understand why Canelo Alvarez has received so much praise from some people for knocking out Sergey Kovalev in his light heavyweight debut two months ago.
Andrade considered Kovalev a relatively easy mark for Alvarez, even though the Mexican superstar moved up two weight classes to challenge Kovalev on November 2 in Las Vegas. Russia’s Kovalev is 36, seven years older than Alvarez, and had been stopped by Andre Ward and Eleider Alvarez before Canelo Alvarez knocked him unconscious in the 11th round.
“Canelo’s fighting old guys on their way out,” Andrade told BoxingScene.com recently. “It’s like, ‘Let me fight ‘Krusher’ at 40 years old, since he’s done.’ ”
Andrade, the unbeaten WBO middleweight champion, would like to fight Alvarez more than Andrade wants any other opponent. He has grown frustrated watching one of the sport’s most proven cash cows face fighters Andrade is certain he himself would defeat.
Kovalev’s age aside, Andrade sensed he was beating Alvarez before Alvarez knocked him out with a right hand to win the WBO light heavyweight title.
Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs) was ahead on two of three scorecards entering the 11th round of what was a closely contested fight versus Kovalev (34-4-1, 29 KOs). Judges Julie Lederman and Dave Moretti had Alvarez in front by the same margin, 96-94, through 10 rounds, but judge Don Trella had scored the action even (95-95).
“He pretty much got beat the whole fight by an older guy you could see really didn’t have the steam that he would have if he were younger,” Andrade said. “And this is an ongoing situation. Canelo done did that with [Shane] Mosley. He did that with [Miguel] Cotto. It’s nothing new. I’m not upset about the strategy because it is a blueprint and it happened to work for him. It’s just like, at the end of the day you’re fighting guys that are on they’re way out.
“The only guys he fought that were somewhat at their prime were [Erislandy] Lara, which was a close fight, and the Danny Jacobs fight. Him fighting Triple-G is a step up, but Triple-G is 38 years old now. So, I’m not saying [Golovkin] has wear and tear, but it just shows people their strategy. And then they tried to do that with Floyd Mayweather, but it just didn’t work.”
The 29-year-old Alvarez likely will return to the ring May 2. Alvarez already has given up the WBO light heavyweight title he won from Kovalev, which means he’ll return either to the super middleweight or middleweight division in his next fight.
Unable to get the type of higher-profile fights he seeks, the 31-year-old Andrade (28-0, 17 KOs) has agreed to defend his 160-pound championship against Ireland’s Luke Keeler (17-2-1, 5 KOs) on January 30 in a main event DAZN will stream from Miami. The Providence, Rhode Island, native is holding out hope, however, that Alvarez eventually will fight him, either at 160 or 168 pounds.
“I would think it would make sense, because who’s gonna be left if I keep beating everybody and he keeps beating everybody?,” Andrade asked. “Then there’s only two people left, in a sense. It’s not like this world is full of top fighters that can just go in there with Canelo.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.