Monday was a busy one in the Los Angeles offices of Golden Boy Promotions, where a matchup between WBC junior middleweight beltholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and former two-time welterweight titleholder Paul Williams was a major topic of discussion for Sept. 15.
“You can put ‘Wow’ in capital letters,” said Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer. “That might be the name of the fight. ‘Wow.’”
Allvarez (40-0-1, 29 knockouts) is coming off the fourth defense of his belt against former champ Sugar Shane Mosley, whom he defeated by unanimous decision on May 5.
Williams (41-2, 27 KOs) has split victories with RING middleweight champ Sergio Martinez and former beltholder Carlos Quintana and won a disputed majority decision over Erislandy Lara — all of whom are fellow southpaws.
Alvarez and Williams have each defeated former welterweight beltholder Kermit Cintron.
“Absolutely, Canelo will definitely fight on Sept. 15,” said Schaefer. “I’m going to be speaking tomorrow, with [boxing] advisor, Al Haymon, and one of the names which we are considering is Paul Williams.”
Other considerations for Alvarez have been WBC welterweight and WBA junior middleweight beltholder Floyd Mayweather Jr. (43-0, 26 KOs), or three-division titlewinner Miguel Cotto (37-2, 30 KOs), the man Mayweather beat by unanimous decision on May 5.
Hammer-fisted James Kirkland (31-1, 27 KOs), also promoted by Golden Boy, was also a name mentioned to face Alvarez.
“Canelo is one of those guys who wants to fight any and everybody, so he has absolutely no fear. He looked sensational against Mosley, and we believe that he is the best 154-pounder,” said Schaefer. “Obviously, Paul Williams would be a big challenge. When I say big, that’s in a big way, so we will see.”
JUAN MANUEL MARQUEZ-ERIC MORALES DISCUSSED FOR JULY 14?
Talks have commenced for Mexican four-division titlewinners Juan Manuel Marquez (54-6-1, 39 KOs) and Erik Morales (52-8, 36 KOs) to clash on July 14 at The Dallas Cowboys Stadium, Schaefer told RingTV.com.
Promoted by Top Rank and Fernando Beltran, Marquez headlined a card April by scoring a unanimous decision over Ukrainian Sergei Fedchenko to earn the WBO’s interim junior welterweight belt.
Morales, who is represented by Golden Boy, lost the WBC 140-pound title Danny “Swift” Garcia (23-0, 14 KOs) via unanimous decision in March.
“July 14, that’s the date that Top Rank is looking at for Marquez, so we’ll see,” said Schaefer. “Hopefully, we can get that done with Morales.”
Prior to the Fedchenko bout, Marquez, 38, had lost his third match with Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 KOs) last November by a disputed majority decision.
But Schaefer has been in discussion with Top Rank President Todd duBoef regarding fight between Marquez and Morales, the latter of whom was the last man to defeat Pacquiao, doing so by unaimous decision in March of 2005.
“Morales wants to fight Marquez,” said Schaefer. “And I have been talking to Todd duBoef over the past few days, and we are trying to find a way to see if we can get that fight done.”
SETH MITCHELL TO RETURN ON AMIR KHAN’S UNDERCARD
Unbeaten heavyweight prospect Seth “Mayhem” Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 KOs) could pursue his 11th straight knockout against Chauncy Welliver in a clash of 29-year-olds, Schaefer said.
Mitchell is coming off a third-round stoppage of Chazz Witherspoon last month. He socred a second-round knockout of Timur Ibragimov in December.
Welliver (53-5-5, 20 KOs) has won eight 18 consecutive fights, eight of them by knockout, and has been stopped just once, by Odlanier Solis in the ninth round in October of 2008.
Mitchell-Welliver is being considered for the undercard of a junior welterweight main event on July 7 that could feature Garcia and former IBF and WBA beltholder Amir Khan (26-2, 18 KOs), according to Schaefer.
“That’s [Welliver] a name which we’re going to be discussing with Seth’s management team, and with his advisor, Al Haymon. But that’s one of the names that we’re talking about,” said Schaefer.
“That would be potentially be paired up with the Amir Khan fight. We’re currently discussing with Team Khan about the venue and the site.”
Garcia, 24, would be after his fourth straight win over a current or former world titleholder against Khan, following consecutive decisions over ex-beltholders Nate Campbell and Kendall Holt in April and October, respectively.
“Garcia is one of the names that is being discussed for Amir Khan,” said Schaefer. “But Erik Morales mentioned to us today that he would love to fight Amir Khan, so that’s another possibility. There are different names which are being mentioned.”
SCHAEFER: “I’LL NEVER GO BACK” TO WASHINGTON, D.C.
Dethroned by Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KOs) via split-decision in December in Peterson’s native Washington, D.C., Khan had a scheduled May 19 rematch canceled after Peterson tested positive for a banned substance.
Peterson admitted to using synthetic testosterone in November prior to facing Khan, claiming it was for medical reasons. Peterson had surgically implanted “testosterone pellets”inserted into his hip by Las Vegas-based Dr. John Thompson on Nov. 12 after he was diagnosed with an abnormal or low testosterone level.
Pending the result of requests of the IBF, WBA and D.C. commission to render a no-contest and restore Khan as beltholder, Schaefer said his company is unlikely to return to D.C.
“If the D.C. commission is going to leave that result the way that it is, and the guy has actually admitted that he has used testosterone, then that basically would mean that it’s okay to take the testosterone pellets a month before a fight and not tell the commission anything,” said Schaefer.
“If they then say that it’s okay, and you’re not going to get stripped? If that’s the position that Washington is taking, then I will tell you that I’ll never go back.”
That means moving a Showtime-televised, IBF featherweight eliminator bout that is slated for June 30 between southpaw Gary Russell Jr. (19-0, 11 KOs), of Captiol Heights, Md., and Luis Franco (11-0, 7 KOs), of Miami, from its intended location in Washington, D.C., to the Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, Calif., Schaefer said.
“We’re trying to finalize a deal with [Franco's promoter] Gary Shaw, and I’m going to be meeting tomorrow with Gary Russell’s advisor, Al Haymon, and try to see if we can get that fight done,” said Schaefer.
“The date is definitely going to be June 30, and the location is going to be Fantasy Springs in Indio, California on Showtime.”
The Russell-Franco undercard will feature a junior middleweight rematch between IBF beltholder Cornelius Bundrage (31-4, 18 KOs) and mandatory challenger Cory Spinks (39-6, 11 KOs), from whom Bundrage took the belt by fifth-round knockout in August of 2010.
Bundrage-Spinks “will be part of the June 30 card, which is going to be a tripleheader,” said Schaefer. “We’re working on another fight. But I’m still working on that, so I can’t really talk about it.”
Photos by Naoki Fukuda
PhotoS by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions
Photo by Steve Samoye, Fightwireimages.com
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org