Canelo Alvarez’s up and down relationship with DAZN is down again after the Mexican star opted to continue his career with a multi-fight deal in order to have his fights staged on PBC pay per views.
Nine out of Alvarez’s last ten fights were staged on DAZN, but that honor will now be given to Showtime, which had a five-fight run with Alvarez from 2012 to 2014 and one fight as well in 2021, when Alvarez stepped aside from DAZN to beat Caleb Plant to become the undisputed super middleweight champion.
In 2018, Alvarez signed a 10-fight, $365 million deal to have his fights exclusively staged on DAZN. But in 2020, Alvarez had the pact severed after just three fights when he sued former promoter Golden Boy and DAZN.
In stepped Matchroom Boxing head Eddie Hearn, who promoted seven out of Alvarez’s last eight fights on DAZN.
Following his wins against Gennadiy Golovkin in September and John Ryder in May, Alvarez was adamant that he desired a rematch with recent conqueror Dmitry Bivol.
But when a deal could not be brokered with the WBA light heavyweight champion, Alvarez instead opted to seek fights with Al Haymon’s PBC, who manages a stable headlined by Alvarez’s likely next opponent, Jermall Charlo, as well as David Benavidez, Errol Spence Jr., David Morrell, and Demetrius Andrade, among others.
Hearn opened up about not being able to work with Alvarez (59-2-2, 39 KOs).
“I think it's a good move for him. Of course, we always want to promote Canelo Alvarez. We never made him an offer. We didn't have a fight for him in September. We were asked to make the Bivol fight, but that wasn't possible,” Hearn told Boxing Social.
“He's got to make his move. I wish him all of the best. It was an amazing run and I am sure we will work together again. Now, we need to look at that huge pot of money that was there for Canelo fights and now start looking at bringing a string of big fights. 2022 was Matchroom's year, and 2023, right now, is PBC's year. We are competitors. We want to win. We are rolling up our sleeves in order to give you an unbelievable six months.
“I am not just saying this, but honestly, DAZN is fine [with losing Alvarez]. It got to a stage where not every Canelo Alvarez fight is a success for DAZN. He is a massive name who's done massive numbers for us. He's always been a success for Matchroom. But it comes to a point where the broadcaster [says] 'am I getting value?' and the fights that are available. The answer is 'not necessarily.' If we had the Charlo fight or the Benavidez fight, things may be a bit different, but we don't.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer, and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and the MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, through email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com, or via www.ManoukAkopyan.com.