Home Boxing News Jim Lampley weighs in on Canelo Alvarez, says the Mexican champion can’t...

Jim Lampley weighs in on Canelo Alvarez, says the Mexican champion can’t expect to please everyone

Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez and David Benavidez. Photo credit: talkSPORT

Former longtime HBO boxing commentator Jim Lampley has weighed in on the Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez situation and his decision to go another route rather than facing David Benavidez.

Undisputed super middleweight champion Alvarez 60-2-2 (39) has a clear-cut number one challenger to his throne in the undefeated Benavidez 28-0 (24), but has opted instead to defend his titles against Jaime Munguia 43-0 (34) at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 4.

Speaking to Fight Hub TV, Lampley wondered if the 33-year-old Mexican superstar should be allowed the type of leeway he currently receives when choosing opponents.

“He’s been in it a long time,” Lampley said of Alvarez. “He’s done this since he was a boy. He has worked very hard in the gym. You have to give him credit for his perseverance, tenacity and dedication to his own cause over a long period of time.

“Now he gets to hear from even a lot of his own fans that ‘just wait until you get into the ring with David Benavidez, Benavidez is a whole new thing, he’s got more power than you have ever dreamed of having, he’s going to wipe you out’. He doesn’t want to hear it. He doesn’t want to be treated to that kind of disrespect from people who’s respect he feels he has very meticulously earned over a long period of time.

“At this point does he really have to keep proving himself over and over and over by taking the biggest fight available, or should they pay him just to fight whoever he wants to fight because he’s Canelo Alvarez? It’s not out of the question that this debate goes on in the back of his mind, ‘Haven’t I done enough? Shouldn’t I get the right to fight who I want to fight?’

“Whatever he thinks of Benavidez, it isn’t at this moment seemingly enough to make him say I want to go straight to David Benavidez and fight the fight everyone wants to see. Sometimes you don’t want that anymore and we’ll see where this all leads.”

The veteran broadcaster said he sees similarities between Alvarez and former undisputed heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis.

“Some fighters generate passionate, absolutely undisputed love from the audience and some fighters don’t,” Lampley said.

“Lennox Lewis beat Evander Holyfield twice, annihilated Mike Tyson, was clearly the number one heavyweight of his era and never really got full credit from the audience for that because there was something about Lewis’ personality that made them feel ‘he’s not committed to me, he’s not willing to go to any length to please me as a fighter, he’s a businessman, he’s picking and choosing, so why should I be impressed? He’s 6’6”.’

“Lennox couldn’t get to the that beloved station in life where his exploits told you that he should belong. At the end of the day he had to accept that ‘alright, the audience for whatever reason wanted Tyson to beat me, the audience for whatever reason wanted Evander to beat me — at the end of the day I’m the one who is me and if they don’t love me it doesn’t matter’.

“For whatever reason, there’s a portion of the audience that has not bought everything Canelo has done as enough to make him a permanent immortal at this point. I say he’s a permanent immortal at this point but I’m not a fan, I’m a businessman who comments on boxing.”