Blockbuster: Canelo versus Pacquiao in 2017

Inquirer Libre - Davao - - PANGUNAHING PAHINA - By Teo Medina Reynoso

MORE than 51,000 paying fans saw Mexican boxing superstar Canelo Alvarez re-capture a share of the world junior middleweight championship via an impressive ninth round knockout over defending British WBO titlist Liam Smith at the AT&T ( formerly known as the Dallas Cowboys ) Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

It was the same site of Manny Pacquiao’s blockbuster fight versus another Mexican Antonio Margarito some years back that gated 50,000 plus paying fan attendance where he won the then vacant WBC title in the same division, his eighth world championships in as many weight classes.

Golden Boy Promotion and HBO are yet to release the official figures as far as pay per view is concerned but Canelo is expected to churn out his usual numbers, upwards of half a million buys and that is talking only of viewers in the USA.

Now I am beginning to see why GBP owner Oscar de la Hoya and Canelo himself are in no particular hurry to set a fight against consensus middleweight king Gennady Golovkin.

I don’t think Oscar and Canelo are literally scared of the Kazakh power puncher.

It is that they know they have invested so much to make the red head Mexican what he is for some time now, a certified crowd-drawing, cash-cow superstar champion fighter. In fact, the only one in the immediate post-Mayweather era pending Pacquiao’s return.

From purely boxing business perspective, they know they will be bringing on the table and staking inside the ring much, much more than GGG can put up, including the WBC, WBA and IBF middleweight belts he currently holds. The highest PPV buys GGG has generated thus far were only in the vicinity of 300,000-400,000 which is well below Canelo’s average.

LIke it or not, pro boxing has become so commercialized that world titles are oftentimes not viewed as a fair trade for a fighter’s marquee value.

In this era where there’s a dearth in marquee names who could draw the paying patrons in, promoters are apt to go for fights that will make the most business sense.

And speaking of highly potential blockbuster boxing bout for 2017, a fight pitting Canelo against Manny Pacquiao should be high on the list especially if the Filipino handily wins his scheduled November 5 title bout versus Jessie Vargas and regains his WBO welterweight crown.

Lately, the Canelo camp has been making mention of Manny in some of their media releases and announcements ( including citing his old gate attendance record at the AT&T Stadium )prompting talks that the Mexican may be entertaining a go at the Pinoy boxing icon. And why not? That bout should not be difficult to arrange. The WBO has a fine record of encouraging title fights between its champions from contigious weight classes. Manny’s promoter Bob Arum has had a long and fine working relationship with Oscar’s GBP until Floyd soured it up in his comeback. And now that Floyd is out of the way, rekindling that old relationship will serve their mutual interests. It is a potential even split matchup, speaking of purse and other shareable income. Any fighting weight issue could be sorted out without much ado, I think.

Most of all, a Philippine versus Mexico boxing matchup at this high level featuring the best/elite fighters still active in Alvarez and Pacquiao in a world championship fight will surely beat anything that the other promotions can put up.

The way I see it, it’s a sure boxing blockbuster if made in 2017!


CANELO versus Pacquiao.

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