Two-division champion and 2021 International Boxing Hall of Fame Inductee Andre Ward believes Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez would have avoided a fight with him when he was active.
Ward dominated the super-middleweight division for a number of years, making six defences of his title with wins over the likes of Carl Froch, Mikkel Kessler and Arthur Abraham putting him in the conversation as one of the greatest ever 168lbers.
The ‘Son of God’ then stepped up to light-heavyweight in 2016, defeating the previously unbeaten unified champion Sergey Kovalev by unanimous decision before knocking the Russian out in their rematch the following year.
Canelo fought Kovalev two-and-a-half years later and also knocked him out in a clash that Ward labelled as a ‘strategic’ move from the Mexican in an interview with Stephen A. Smith, when explaining why he believes he’d never have the chance to face Alvarez himself.
“I don’t think that he would’ve fought me.
My name was never mentioned with Canelo Alvarez until he fought a common opponent. He fought Sergey Kovalev and I don’t want to say that he was shot, but he was on his way out of the door. He wasn’t ‘The Krusher’ at that point in time, that’s a strategic move and that’s what Canelo does.”
“The only problem that I have is when we start mentioning his name with the all-time great Mexican fighters and the greatest fighters of all-time. I have a problem with that because I’m looking at the résumé and a lot of times people point out the names, but when did he beat them, ‘oh he was past his prime’, people don’t know to look for those kind of things so they just say that it’s a name.”
Canelo is now being linked to a showdown with David Benavidez, a man who appears to be in his ‘prime’, but it remains to been seen when the undisputed super-middleweight champion will take that opportunity to silence his doubters.