Bernard Hackett, trainer and father of welterweight Jalil Hackett, a recent Matchroom signee, has an interesting take on whether undisputed super middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez needs to fight David Benavidez, as well as where Cuban puncher David Morrell fits into the equation.

In his light heavyweight debut, Benavidez won a unanimous decision over Oleksandr Gvozdyk on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, capturing the WBC interim 175-pound title. Following the fight, Benavidez hinted at a return to super middleweight.

But for now, both Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs) and Morrell (10-0, 9 KOs) are light heavyweights. Benavidez, 27, has been persistent in calling for a fight with the 33-year-old Alvarez (61-2-2, 39 KOs), but so far his cries have fallen on deaf ears. Morrell, 26, a slick boxer with one-punch knockout power who has been one of boxing’s most avoided fighters, is following Benavidez up to light heavyweight to face “Hot Rod” Radivoje Kalajdzic (29-2, 21 KOs) on Aug. 3 in Los Angeles.

“Morrell, he can fight. ‘Slim’ is a real monster – he’s a beast,” Hackett said. “I think Benavidez is also a beast. I feel more sympathy for Benavidez because I’m a Canelo fan. But I think Benavidez deserves his shot because he’s in that era with Canelo.”

Hackett believes each fighter has a group of competitors they ought to face. Morrell, who turned professional in 2019, might be only a year younger than Benavidez but arguably fits into a different group, as Benavidez turned professional in 2013. 

“If we don’t get a Canelo-Benavidez fight, that’ll be sad for boxing,” Hackett said. “Morrell’s like Jalil as far as age and the number of fights he’s had. He has a future as a top guy, and his future is coming up. Like I always say, boxing has generations that have eras, and his era is coming. Benavidez’s era is with Canelo.”

Hackett believes that despite Benavidez’s recent fight at light heavyweight, and despite Alvarez seemingly having no interest in fighting above super middleweight after losing to Dmitry Bivol, the two need to fight in some capacity soon.

“If Canelo and him don’t fight, that'll be a major travesty to Benavidez because he deserves that fight,” Hackett said. “But if Morrell doesn’t fight Canelo, that’s not a travesty. There are two different eras.”