WBC heavyweight king Tyson Fury feels friend and fellow Traveller Billy Joe Saunders has all the attributes to give Canelo Alvarez a torrid night when they lock horns in a likely 168lbs unification bout this year.
WBA ‘Super’ and WBC super-middleweight champion Canelo will face mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim in Miami on February 27 before moving on to a projected unification with rival WBO title holder Saunders on May 8.
Fury says the slick Saunders has the tools to give Canelo fits if they meet and will not be there to collect a big purse and make up the numbers.
“Me and Billy Joe Saunders, we are not journeymen, we are not in boxing for a payday,” Fury told journalist Gareth A. Davies. “We’re not in boxing to make some numbers up and get a few extra million quid in our bank. Not interested.
“We would rather have zero money and win than take fights we’re not ready for. He needs to be active and he will punch Canelo Alvarez all around the ring. Canelo Alvarez’s kryptonite is someone who boxes and moves – southpaw, slick, good feet, good hand speed, good power. Billy Joe Saunders does all of that.
“The one thing I [will] say, he needs to be active. And the one thing he has not been, is active. Just like me. When I’m active and I’m injury-free, no one’s got a chance against me. Just like Billy Joe.
“No middle or super middle in the world has got a chance when he’s active. But the good old cliché with me and Billy Joe Saunders is we are never active. We have had more inactivity in our careers then we’ve had activity. Billy Joe has had the one fight with Martin Murray, which went on I don’t know how long.
“For me to say what Billy Joe needs is Billy Joe needs another fight. And maybe another one after that.”