Canelo Alvarez gave a diplomatic response to one of boxing’s most heated topics of conversation.
In an interview with FightHype.com, the current WBC/WBO/WBA 168-pound champion was asked for his thoughts on potentially fighting Jake Paul, the YouTuber-turned-boxer who has polarized the boxing scene ever since he stepped into the ring nearly two years ago.
“We don’t know,” Alvarez said after a workout in his San Diego gym for his upcoming Nov. 6 undisputed super middleweight title bout against Caleb Plant (21-0, 12 KOs) in Las Vegas on Showtime Pay-Per-View. “We don’t know. We never say no. We don’t know. He can try and keep…fighting and learning. We’ll see in the future.”
Lambasted and reviled in some corners as a circus act and grifter, the undefeated Paul has nevertheless managed to string together four professional wins against three knockouts as a prizefighter, his latest victory being an eight-round decision over MMA fighter Tyron Woodley in August at the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Paul's hometown of Cleveland. He recently signed a deal earlier this year with Showtime to headline pay-per-view shows on the storied network and is now working with women’s featherweight champion Amanda Serrano and her team on marketing her career.
Earlier this summer, the brash Paul, a cruiserweight, went so far as to say that he would be ready to take on Alvarez within three years, noting that if previous Alvarez opponents in Avni Yildirim and Billy Joe Saunders could get in the ring with the Mexican superstar, there is no reason to believe he couldn’t do the same.
“So if those guys can go in there and hang in there with Canelo, can Jake Paul in three years go 12 rounds and beat him? We’ll see. Don’t put it past [me],” Paul told reporters at the time.
As open-minded as he may be to a fight with Paul, Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) clearly does not feel threatened by the gabby Ohioan.
Asked what Paul would need to do or improve on, Alvarez cracked, “Lot of things. Lot of things.”
What Alvarez refused to do was dump more criticism on Paul, whom many fans and pundits believe is damaging the reputation of the sport. On the contrary, Alvarez seemed to suggest that Paul’s presence is a net positive.
“I’m not going to say I don’t like or I like,” Alvarez said. “Everybody has his [own] personality. So it’s good.”
Predictably, it was not long after Alvarez’s interview that Paul responded with his own video in which he is seen mimicking Alvarez.