As World Boxing News first reported on June 24th, a clash between Canelo Alvarez and Sergey Kovalev is being eyed for 2019.
Canelo wants to win another weight world title and targeted Kovalev’s WBO 175 pound strap for a September outing.
WBN also revealed a deal between Kovalev and his mandatory challenger Anthony Yarde is almost done. Something which puts a block on Canelo facing Kovalev in September.
A deal may be more feasible in November or December, once Briton Yarde is out of the way.
“We have received an offer from Golden Boy and we are still talking,” Duva exclusively told World Boxing News, before outlining a previously revealed agreement with Yarde is hampering a potential deal.
“The window on the deal in Russia is closing shortly. There may not be enough time for us to negotiate this deal from start to finish for September, which is the date Golden Boy have proposed.”
Kovalev could negate on the Yarde handshake, but that would almost certainly mean Canelo pulls out due to a lack of championship on the line.
“At the moment, we can’t risk losing the Russia deal and Sergey’s title in the process while we go back and forth with GB. They may have waited too long for September to be realistic. We will see.”
Previously, Duva had kept WBN in the loop on Yarde and that stipulated Russian match-up.
“The Yarde negotiations are moving forward between the promoter in Russia, RCC, and Queensberry – who represents Yarde,” Duva told WBN on June 28th.
“I heard from both sides yesterday that they have come to terms on all of the contract provisions.”
Canelo was also looking at World Boxing Super Series winner Callum Smith, although Duva was unconvinced.
“I can see where a Canelo v Callum Smith match would be a fun fight. And that is particularly interesting to Smith’s fans in the UK. But, at this point, Smith is not yet terribly well known here in the states,” she pointed out.
“Canelo’s interest in jumping all the way up to light heavyweight to challenge for a historic world title in a fourth weight class against a monster puncher like Sergey Kovalev puts that particular fight into another class entirely. So who wouldn’t want to watch it?
“Sergey is a legendary warrior in his own right. He is well known to boxing fans all over the world and has never, ever backed down from a challenge.
“In my opinion, this fight has the potential to turn into one of the classics, casting Canelo in the mold of greats like Leonard, Duran, Hearns, Whitaker, Chavez and DeLaHoya.
“All of them sought out bigger and riskier challenges as their careers progressed. They were not satisfied to remain in one division that they could easily dominate.
“That’s why we remember them as all-time greats due to their willingness to take risks. Not because of their won-lost records.
“In my opinion, Boxing could use a few more ‘throwback’ risk takers like Canelo. We already have more than enough fighters whose only goal is to preserve their precious ‘0’s.”
A win for Canelo over Kovalev would see the Mexican join Juan Manuel Marquez, Erik Morales and Jorge Arce as a four-division ruler.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay