Photo Credit: Tom Hogan
Despite the still visible discoloration and bruising from the left eye cut he suffered against Gennady Golovkin last month, Canelo Alvarez is determined to not alter his rigorous sparring preparation for Rocky Fielding.
The newly crowned WBA/WBC middleweight champion is scheduled to make his debut at super middleweight on December 15 against Fielding at Madison Square Garden. But there is concern the quick three-month turnaround from the Golovkin rematch isn’t sufficient time for Alvarez’s jagged cut to heal.
“My recovery has been great,” Canelo assured during yesterday’s NYC press conference. “The cut is recovering. We haven’t started sparring yet, but we will start soon. We will do more than 50 rounds of sparring like in every camp. This is a new challenge, to be moving up in weight. We’ll see how the weight affects me. He’ll be bigger and maybe even stronger than me. This is a risk that I am taking.”
The risk for Alvarez is two-fold. Sparring could reopen the wound and cause the bout to be delayed into the new year, affecting his usual timeline of fighting on Cinco de Mayo weekend in May. But the bigger risk is the cut being ripped open during the Fielding fight and potentially leading to an upset stoppage loss.
For Canelo, the allure of adding Fielding’s WBA 168-pound title to his ledger makes the move worth it.
“I’m entering the comfort zone of the champion, but I’ll take this challenge on because that’s what I need to do to make history in my career,” said Canelo. “I want to be one of the top ten Mexican fighters to become a three-division world champion.”
Canelo’s bout against Fielding will be his first for DAZN’s global streaming service after signing an historic 5-year, $365 million dollar deal.