Golden Boy’s Oscar De La Hoya heard some interview where IBF welterweight titleholder Errol Spence Jr said he’d like to fight WBC/WBA/IBF middleweight titleholder Canelo Alvarez, and Oscar has basically thrown Spence’s name into the Canelo hat.
“I am letting you know that we love the fight as well and I’ve always said that Errol Spence is one of the most talented fighters out there. There’s no reason why Spence can’t move up to middleweight if Mikey Garcia could go up (from lightweight) to welterweight to fight Spence. And if Spence fights Canelo, it will be the most money Errol Spence will ever make. I would love to start the ball rolling. Let’s do it. We just want to get Canelo the best fights and the toughest challenges out there.”
What Oscar isn’t saying here is that Spence-Garcia was a dull affair because Garcia was proven to have no business fighting at welterweight, and couldn’t do a damn thing with the bigger, stronger Spence for 12 rounds in their March 16 fight, which Spence won easily at AT&T Stadium on FOX pay-per-view.
Spence (25-0, 21 KO) could potentially have the body and skill to successfully fight at middleweight someday, but 147 and 160 are a big difference.
De La Hoya himself knows this from his own career. Back in 2004, De La Hoya decided to move from 154, where he’d had four fights after a strong run at 147 from 1997-2001, up to 160 for a fight with champion Bernard Hopkins.
De La Hoya took what was supposed to be a tune-up in June 2004 with Felix Sturm. Sturm, who wasn’t a great fighter, gave De La Hoya hell and was very arguably shafted on the scorecards in Las Vegas. Oscar kept the 158-pound catchweight fight with Hopkins for September anyway, and he got knocked out in the ninth round, the first time he’d ever been stopped.
I’m not saying there’s no interest in Canelo-Spence, there certainly would be. And I’m not saying that many haven’t gone up in weight successfully over the years — Oscar went from 130 to 154 very well, Manny Pacquiao’s rise in weight has been legendary, Floyd Mayweather went undefeated from 130 to 154, and on and on. I’m not even saying Spence couldn’t do just fine.
But using Spence-Garcia as a reason to push for Canelo-Spence is probably not the greatest idea. Too fresh in everyone’s minds. We saw that fight, and it wasn’t good.