Canelo Alvarez promised to make Billy Joe Saunders quit and that’s exactly what happened in the 8th round of their super-middleweight unification fight.
WBC, WBA (Super), and The Ring champion Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) added Saunders’ WBO title to his collection with a bruising performance in front of 73,126 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, a record crowd for an indoor boxing event in the United States.
“I knew this would be final outcome,” Alvarez said through a translator in his postfight interview. “I knew it. I think I broke his cheek and knew he wasn’t coming out of the corner. I told Eddie [Hearn] he wasn’t coming out because I broke his cheek. I knew it was it.”
Hearn also said in a postfight interview that Saunders broke his eye socket (orbital bone). Saunders’ trainer Mark Tibbs refused to let the previously undefeated fighter continue.
Alvarez was not surprised that Saunders did not continue. He told his trainer Eddy Reynoso that he knew Saunders would not continue because of the broken bone.
What’s next for Alvarez? He has been consistent in saying he wants to hold all the belts at the 168 middleweight division to become the first undisputed champion in the modern era.
“That’s the fight that has to happen for boxing — the undisputed championship at 168 pounds,” Hearn said on DAZN. “It’s the must-make fight next. What’s Caleb Plant going to do?”