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Canelo Alvarez Agrees to Multifight Deal With Premier Boxing Champions

Saùl “Canelo” Álvarez, the undisputed super middleweight champion and the U.S.’s most bankable boxing star, has agreed to a multifight deal with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC), sources familiar with the deal told Sports Illustrated.

On Thursday, Álvarez (59-2-2) posted on his Instagram story, “Done Deal,” which was followed by a PBC logo.

Álvarez, who successfully defended his titles against John Ryder in May, will return to the ring in September, likely against middleweight titleholder Jermall Charlo. Álvarez and Charlo, who is also represented by PBC, have been negotiating for several weeks. Recently Haymon and Eddy Reynoso, Álvarez’s trainer and manager, met in Cleveland to discuss the framework of the agreement.

Álvarez, 32, had publicly expressed a desire for a rematch with 175-pound champion Dmitry Bivol, who defeated Álvarez in May 2022. Negotiations for a rematch fell apart quickly, however, with financial issues (Bivol’s team sought a substantial increase from the $5 million Bivol made for the first fight) and the contracted weight (Álvarez wanted the fight at 175; Bivol preferred to have it at 168) forming significant roadblocks.

“It was really the stubbornness of the competitors,” says Eddie Hearn, whose Matchroom Boxing has promoted six of Álvarez’s last seven fights. “Dmitry Bivol says ‘I’ve beaten him. I don’t feel like it was competitive. I’m not overly motivated by the rematch. I don’t really care about money. I care about legacy. So let me fight you at 168. Let me fight for the undisputed championship and we’ve got a fight.’

“Canelo says he doesn’t want to bring him down to 168 for the first time in his career, get a load of criticism for beating him when he wants to beat him on the same terms as last time … ultimately, the competitive stubbornness off both that kept that fight apart.”

If Álvarez defeats Charlo, a showdown with David Benavidez could take place next May. Benavidez (27–0), who picked up a decision win over Caleb Plant last March, has publicly called for a showdown with Álvarez. Benavidez’s promoter, Sampson Lewkowicz, who is backed by PBC, revealed he made a substantial offer to Álvarez earlier this month. That offer, sources told SI, would have guaranteed Álvarez $35–40 million to face Benavidez.

Benavidez is reportedly in advanced discussions to face David Morrell, another unbeaten super middleweight, sometime in the fall.

For Álvarez, a multifight deal with PBC will be lucrative. It will also enable him to build on what is already a Hall of Fame legacy. Charlo (32–0) has not fought in more than two years but he is an undefeated titleholder. And the 26-year old Benavidez is widely considered the biggest threat to Canelo at 168 pounds. Since exiting a long-term agreement with Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions in 2020, Álvarez has bounced between PBC and Matchroom to secure the biggest, most significant fights.

It appears he has again done just that.