It’s been years in the making, but it looks like we’re finally getting close to a match between boxing legend Saul “Canelo” Álvarez and one of two challengers who have been hot on his trail: David Benavidez and Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade.
Benavidez and Andrade have claimed for the past couple of years that Álvarez is avoiding stepping into the ring with them, but recent developments have made it so that he won’t be able to duck out any longer.
That’s because Benavidez and Andrade are set to face off against one another in the next few months: they’re still finalizing the details of their contract, so we don’t know exactly when it’ll take place yet, but we know it’s coming soon.
Before we even get to the fight itself, the most fascinating storyline surrounding it is what will happen afterward. Following Benavidez’s victory over Caleb Plant via unanimous decision in March, he retained his position as the mandatory challenger—which he’s had for the past three years—for the WBC super-middleweight title, which Álvarez currently holds. Álvarez already had a match lined up against John Ryder lined up for May, so he wasn’t able to jostle the schedule around in order to give Benavidez the fight he’s been waiting for.
Benavidez holds a perfect 27-0 professional record in his career; Andrade, likewise, holds a 32-0 margin. That’s going to change for one of them when they finally step in the ring together, and the champion being able to add a win over a previously undefeated fighter to their resume will make it even harder for Álvarez to avoid them… if, indeed, that’s what the notoriously selective fighter has been doing.
The loser of Benavidez/Andrade should have a potential big fight matchup waiting as many people think they are the top two fighters in the division. With potential fights against, one of the Charlo brothers, Jermall or Jermell Charlo, the latter of whom is set to face Álvarez at the end of September. Include fellow undefeated boxers David Morrell and Jaime Munguia all potentially in the cards along with Caleb Plant who would like a rematch against Benavidez and has also said he would like to fight Andrade.
Benavidez was linked to a potential fight with Morrell earlier this year, so we’re set to get some fascinating matchups even if Álvarez continues to pick other opponents. Now that we have the future covered, here’s a look at the upcoming match.
David Benavidez stands 6-foot-2, an incredibly lanky fighter with a 78 ½ inch reach.
The fight will take place in the super middleweight class, so both Benavidez and Andrade are going to weigh in somewhere between 160 and 168 pounds. 23 of his 27 career wins have come via knockout, so he’s shown an ability to end things quickly.
He held the World Boxing Council title belt for super middleweight during two separate stretches of his career, an impressive feat for a 26-year-old fighter just entering his prime. The first time he lost it was because of a positive drug test, while he won the second title on an interim basis. Benavidez fights out of an orthodox stance, while Andrade is a southpaw.
Benavidez is from Arizona, and right now BetMGM’s Arizona Sportsbook is expected to have him as the favorite. The official betting lines will drop once the two camps decide when the fight will take place. The BetMGM Arizona app will come in handy for this fight and any other big fights you’re looking to add excitement to.
Andrade, on the other hand, stands 6-foot-1 with a 73 ½ inch reach. He doesn’t have quite the range that Benavidez does, but the Arizona native is an incredibly aggressive fighter—often described as swarming—so that may not end up playing too much of a role if he decides to get in close. Andrade is the polar opposite of Benavidez in many ways. He has a fair number of knockouts in his career, with 19 of his 32 victories determined by punches, but he has the reputation of being a boring fighter because of his cautious, meticulous style.
The stylistic differences alone make for a fascinating matchup, a sort of ‘tortoise and the hare’ conundrum that will determine whether the furious or the fastidious fighter will reign supreme.
Benavidez fights out of an orthodox stance, while Andrade is a southpaw, yet another example of the clashing styles.
Like Benavidez, Andrade has a pair of world championships to his name, but they’re at lower weight classes: middleweight and light middleweight. He’s used to fighting at a lighter weight than Benavidez, then, and it’ll be interesting to see how he gets up to speed against one of the best fighters in the world. Despite those two championships, Andrade has received criticism in the past for not facing a quality caliber of opponents. Some people say that is because everyone is scared to face him. If he wins this matchup, it will give him an excellent chance to put those complaints to bed for good. Andrade is 35 years old, so if Benavidez is just entering his prime, his opponent is on the tail end of it.