'Canelo' Alvarez vacates WBC middleweight title - but still eyes Gennady Golovkin fight
Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez (47-1-1, 33 KOs) has elected to relinquish his WBC middleweight title, but vowed to still finalize a mega-fight with Gennady Golovkin (35-0, 32 KOs).
Following his 6th round knockout victory over Amir Khan earlier this month, the 25-year-old Mexican was mandated to fight Golovkin, the interim champion, with a likely date of September 17.
The two camps faced a deadline on Tuesday to make the mandatory fight or the WBC would schedule a May 24 purse bid, where promotional rights to the fight would have gone to the highest bidder.
Canelo, who won the belt by outpointing Miguel Cotto in November, has now vacated the title so that he can have more time to negotiate a fight, and Golovkin, 34, a Kazakhstan native , residing in Los Angeles, becomes the WBC middleweight champion, adding to his WBA and IBF belts.
"After much consideration, I instructed my team at Golden Boy Promotions to continue negotiating a fight with Gennady 'GGG' Golovkin and to finalize a deal as quickly as possible," said Canelo. "I also informed the WBC that I will vacate its title.
"For the entirety of my career, I have taken the fights that no one wanted because I fear no man. Never has that been more true than today. I will fight 'GGG,' and I will beat 'GGG', but I will not be forced into the ring by artificial deadlines. I am hopeful that by putting aside this ticking clock, the two teams can now negotiate this fight, and 'GGG' and I can get in the ring as soon as possible and give the fans the fight they want to see."
Golden Boy Chairman Oscar De La Hoya added: "There is no denying that Canelo is the biggest star in the sport of boxing.
"He is eager to get in the ring with 'GGG' to show the world that he is also the best pound for pound fighter in the sport, but we won't negotiate under a forced deadline.
"Now that the WBC title is off the table, I am hopeful that 'GGG' and his promoter K2 Promotions will come to the table in good faith and get this deal done."