Pound for pound king Canelo could become the most lucrative free agent

Pound for pound number one Canelo Alvarez could soon become the most lucrative free agent on the market after trouble erupted in paradise.

The Mexican superstar has reportedly launched legal action against Golden Boy Promotions and DAZN for loss of earnings in 2020.

During the pandemic, Golden Boy Chairman Oscar De La Hoya has been unable to deliver one fight, let alone the two that are stipulated in Canelo’s massive contract.

This has led to problems between De La Hoya, Canelo, and streaming service DAZN. The latter had guaranteed $365 million to broadcast ten fights.

Brewing since 2018, Canelo and Golden Boy have seen their relationship deteriorate over the time span of the agreement with DAZN.

Snipes over opponent choices, the stripping of titles without consultation, and the recent coronavirus blackout have all contributed to a toxic atmosphere.

This has now led to Canelo filing a lawsuit. He aims to recoup payments lost during what is set to become a blank calendar year.

Canelo vs Sergey Kovalev Pound for Pound
Amanda Westcott

The 30-year-old last fought in November 2019 in defeating Sergey Kovalev. In the process, Canelo became a four-weight world title-holder in many eyes.

A December 2018 victory for the WBA ‘regular’ super-middleweight title remains a bone of contention to the vast majority of fans. The strap is not recognized as a full world championship.

Therefore, Canelo was put forward by the WBC to contest their version against Avni Yildirim. As WBN first reported, Yildirim was not a likable choice for DAZN.


The failure to secure this fight, which would have given Canelo full four-weight status – over the line, seems to be the straw that broke the camel’s back.

If the situation is unable to be salvaged, the likes of Top Rank, Mayweather Promotions, Premier Boxing Champions, and Matchroom Boxing USA will be on full alert to pounce.

Canelo will be looking for compensation for at least $70 million. The amount he should have earned in 2020. That’s provided he’d fought in May and September – as usual.


DAZN may well have a case over the first date, though. The coronavirus pandemic made it impossible for any fights to take place until at least June.

Furthermore, if DAZN can arrange an event for Canelo by November of December, they may be able to stave off any breach of contract in court.

We will see. But the relationship at the moment is certainly not healthy between all concerned.

High drama.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay.