One of the most dangerous men on the planet at 168lbs, two-time world champion David Benavidez remains a king without a crown. 

The unbeaten Mexican-American has twice lost the WBC 168lbs title outside of the ropes, having been stripped after testing positive for cocaine in 2018 and missing the weight ahead of a planned title defence against Roamer Alexis Angulo last August.

But Benavidez now believes he has his discipline under control ahead of a March 13 return against Ronald Ellis (18-1-2, 12 KOs and 1 NC) at a location to be decided, with the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut, seeming the most likely destination.

Leaving nothing to chance on the weight, Benavidez (23-0, 20 KOs) is currently deep in training at Big Bear, California, ahead of the Ellis bout with a potential clash against IBF Caleb Plant one of his motivating forces.

“We’ve been in training camp for about six or seven weeks already,” Benavidez told ESPN.com. “We’ve got another six weeks left, so we’ve been working extremely hard. I want to give a great performance; that’s why I came to camp a little bit earlier so by the time the camp ends, we’re going to have at least 13-14 weeks done.

“I would definitely love that fight [with Plant], but my mindset right now is I just want any of the top fighters at 168. I feel like I’ve been here [already]. I’ve been two-time world champion, I’ve been in the division and I’ve been doing exactly what I have to do for years and years so I feel like I deserve any of those top fights with those top guys.

“And also, just for the fans. I feel like the fans, we deserve it to the fans to give them the best of the best.”