Exclusive: Erislandy Lara eyes Cotto-Canelo winner, WBC tourney, WBA ‘super’ status and 160 run
Erislandy Lara is hoping to cram plenty into the New Year as the Cuban awaits the outcome of this weekend’s massive clash between Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez in Las Vegas.
The 32 year-old is himself lined up to defend the WBA and IBO super welterweight belts currently in his possession against Jan Zaveck next Wednesday, although Lara has already set goals for 2016 that he hopes to accomplish.
Of Lara’s two losses to date, the split decision against Canelo in 2014 still rankles with the southpaw and whoever comes out on top in Las Vegas on Saturday night is firmly on the unified champion’s radar.
“Of course I would definitely want a rematch with Canelo as I feel I defeated him and so do a lot of other people,” Lara exclusively told World Boxing News.
“It doesn’t matter what weight, I’ll fight him anywhere, but also If Cotto wins it would be an honor to step in the ring with him as well. He’s a great champion and I think that would be a great fight for the fans.”
A place in the WBC’s upcoming tournament to find a successor to Floyd Mayweather would also be an option for Lara, who has thrown his hat into the ring alongside Jorge Cota, Demetrius Andrade, John Jackson and Charles Hatley.
“My goal right now is to unify all the belts at 154 pounds and being part of the WBC Tournament is something I’d be interested in. Floyd Mayweather had an incredible career, but he’s retired now so it’s time for me to wipe out the division before possibly moving up to 160 to challenge all the champions in that division.”
On a possible move up to middleweight, Lara added: “I’m willing to fight anyone of them, including GGG, Andy Lee or the Danny Jacobs vs Peter Quillin winner.
“I also I believe that now I have two belts, there is no reason why the WBA shouldn’t make me ‘super’ champion so that I can fight in a unification soon and then fight at 160.”
Only a good performance against ex-IBF title holder Zaveck in Florida can open the door to what ‘The American Dream’ hopes to achieve in the near future – following on from recent wins over Delvin Rodriguez and ex-IBF title holder Ishe Smith.