WBC Won’t Order Canelo To Defend Against Benavidez Until May 2024 – SolSportHQ
By Adam Baskin: WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman said today that his organization wouldn’t order undisputed 168-lb champion Canelo Alvarez to defend against his mandatory David Benavidez unit next year in May 2024.
Sulaiman points out that Benavidez (27-0, 23 KOs) recently beat Caleb Plant last March, and the WBC will not order Canelo to defend against him for another ten months from now. This means Canelo will have had two years of sanctuary, protected from Benavidez since the ‘Mexican Monster’ became his mandatory.
Benavidez has been the WBC mandatory & interim 168-lb champion for two years since his third-round knockout of David Lemieux in May 2021.
“Benavidez defeated Plant in March of this year, so the date for his mandatory position is March 2024,” said Mauricio Sulaiman to Broadway Joel about when David Benavidez will get his mandatory title shot against WBC super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez.
“Yeah, they can fight any time,” said Sulaiman about Canelo having the option of defending against Benavidez at any time to satisfy his mandatory requirement with the WBC.
WBC champions are supposed to make yearly mandatory title defenses, but in Canelo’s case, he’s being given two years. Of course, that’s assuming that Canelo actually defends against Benavidez in 2024 because, what we’ve learned from the past, the WBC can’t force Alvarez to do anything.
When they tried to force Canelo to fight his then-middleweight mandatory Gennadiy Golovkin in 2016, he vacated his WBC title.
Obviously, the last thing the WBC wants is for Canelo to vacate their 168-lb title if they try and force him to defend against his way, way overdue mandatory Benavidez next year.
PBC is rumored to have Jermall Charlo slotted to face Canelo in May 2024 in Alvarez’s second fight of his three-fight, $100 million+ deal with their company.
If Jermall hasn’t pulled it together with his life by then, Errol Spence Jr will be the guy that faces Canelo if he comes out victorious in his two matches with Terence Crawford this year.
The WBC isn’t going to be able to force Canelo to fight Benavidez next year, not that they’ll even make an attempt. More than likely, the WBC will put it to a vote and give Canelo ‘special permission’ to swerve Benavidez in favor of Jermall or Spence.
Benavidez will still be waiting for his mandatory crack at the WBC belt in 2025 because Canelo won’t fight him next year.
It would be a good idea for Benavidez to take the hint, see it for what it is, and move up to 175 unless he feels brave and wants to take on WBC ‘regular’ super middleweight champion David Morrell Jr for his belt. Morrell is probably all wrong for Benavidez, so he’ll avoid him like the plague.