Dmitry Bivol next seeks an undisputed showdown against Artur Beterbiev should he defeat Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez on November 5, with his team insisting they won’t be involved in a rematch against Canelo Alvarez.
The undefeated Russian (20-0) picked up a career-best scalp against pound-for-pound star Canelo in May as he drove to a lopsided unanimous decision win in Las Vegas.
There has been much talk of Canelo’s revenge mission set to take place next year’s Cinco de Mayo weekend, although the Mexican is currently focused on a trilogy fight against long-time rival Gennady Golovkin in September.
Dmitry Bivol (right) beat pound-for-pound star Canelo Alvarez (left) in May.
The WBA champion is looking to fight Artur Beterbiev (pictured) for all the light heavyweight belts
But Bivol, speaking at the Etihad Arena in a sparkling Hilton Hotel nine weeks before his showdown in Abu Dhabi, insists he has other plans.
“To be honest, I want to fight for the other belts,” Bivol said of a Canelo rematch. ‘But if he wants to fight me again, we can negotiate, and if I’m all right, then why not?’
He continued: “Being unchallenged is my main goal. As an amateur, I wanted to be an Olympic champion. It has helped me train hard, be focused and get better.
“If you have a big goal, it helps you. And in professional boxing, if you’re unchallenged, that means you’re at the highest level. This is what I want.’
Bivol’s stock has risen dramatically since he defeated Canelo to retain his WBA belt after previously looking a bit uninspired against smaller opponents including Britain’s Craig Richards.
The way he handled the multi-weight champion has put him alongside some of the best boxers in the pound-for-pound talk.
An undisputed duel against WBC, WBO and IBF champion Beterbiev, also unbeaten 18-0, now resembles a battle of global interest between the two fighters, which Bivol emphasizes are at the top of the division.
Focus for Bivol is a mandatory defense against Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez (center right)
Beterbiev is set to fight mandatory challenger Anthony Yarde (left) early next year after the Russian called off his scheduled fight with injury
“We’ve got the belts, that means we’re the best,” he said. “I’ve been the champion for five years; I can’t say I’m the best, but of course I’m one of the best.”
When the fight could actually take place remains to be seen as Beterbiev’s mandatory defense against Britain’s Anthony Yarde has most likely been postponed until early next year due to the Russian’s injury.
For Bivol, a fight against Beterbiev – who he fought extensively as an amateur – will be tougher than against Canelo, although he acknowledges the Mexican’s popularity and skill played a part in their fight and insists it’s difficult was coming into the competition as so overwhelmingly underdog.
However, the 31-year-old wants to stress that the challenge that now lies ahead of him is his main focus as he has wanted to go head-to-head with 44-0 southpaw Ramirez for a number of years.
Ramirez has been on a strong streak of five straight stoppage wins since switching to 175lbs
Bivol also emphasizes that the fight has now become personal as he has remained silent during the negotiations while Ramirez has done everything but.
“I’ve wanted to fight him before,” he said. “When he was super middleweight I told him I would love to fight him and I can go down but no one wanted to make the fight.
“I know he had a conversation with Eddie when he left Top Rank [Hearn] to work together and Eddie could have fought me, but he chose Golden Boy.
“Then he talked too much about a fight against me. I only spoke to my team and not to the press because I know how it works. If there isn’t the money to fight this fight, it wouldn’t be real. But now I’m glad things are going the way they are.
“It’s a bit personal now because he’s been talking too much. But we’ll see in the ring.’
Crucially for Bivol, he and his team insist they are not involved in a rematch with Canelo and they will see where the country lies on November 6th.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/boxing/article-11169143/Dmitry-Bivol-insists-does-NOT-want-Canelo-Alvarez-rematch-next.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Dmitry Bivol insists he does NOT want a next rematch with Canelo Alvarez