Explosive Canelo Interview

Canelo on kidnapping, COVID, Mayweather, Oscar

Boxing superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez SPEAKS ENGLISH and reveals for the first time that he was responsible for negotiating the release of his kidnapped brother, suspects local law enforcement may have been involved and is spending less and less time in Mexico due to safety concerns.

On this weekend’s episode of In Depth with Graham Bensinger, the historically private athlete invited Graham Bensinger to his Guadalajara ranch and also opened up about his family, his battle against COVID-19 just six weeks prior to his last fight (vs. Yildirim), and a request he made to his siblings after his brother’s murder allegations.

Plus, Canelo shares harsh criticism for Oscar De La Hoya and the entire team at Golden Boy Promotions, and he talks of hypothetically knocking out Floyd Mayweather Jr.

The episode also features the first video tour of Canelo’s Guadalajara mansion and horse ranch, as well as biting remarks towards the one opponent he does not respect.

The full episode debuts across the country this weekend.


Canelo reveals that in 2018 he privately spent three days negotiating the release of his kidnapped brother – just days before a fight in New York – and that he couldn’t go to the police for help as he suspects they were involved.

CANELO: For three days I negotiated with those a**holes so that they would let him go. Three days…  And in addition I had to fight that Saturday, and a thousand interviews and everything and no one ever knew anything about this… They see me up there and they say, ‘Wow, it’s very easy.’ But nothing is easy in this life. Everything is difficult….

BENSINGER: Did you have to involve the police or no?

CANELO: No, no, never. Because, it’s even hard in Mexico… Because maybe they were involved in that situation.

BENSINGER: Oh. Did you feel like that had happened – that the police were involved – or you just weren’t sure?

CANELO: I think so.

BENSINGER: But that probably makes you concerned for the rest of your family being here… Would you want to move them to the States?

CANELO: I would like [to], but it’s difficult. They have their life here in Mexico. I can’t do it.


Canelo also spoke more broadly about safety concerns while in Mexico, and that he’s spending less time in his native country.

CANELO: I have security here because of people who can be greedy, those who steal at stop lights. There’s a lot of insecurity, too much insecurity. This is why I’m not here in Mexico much anymore, because it’s not safe. Worse still for me and for my family… And the government is not concerned about this. They’re concerned about other things.


Canelo states for the first time that he got COVID earlier this year, just six weeks before his bout with Avni Yildirim in late February.

CANELO: I started first with no sense of smell or taste. I got tested and I had to be 15 days in isolation, because my wife had it too. But I didn’t tell anyone because I didn’t really feel anything. I had no other symptoms except what I said: no taste or smell. But I got COVID, and after I got well, I did the test again. I went to San Diego and trained for only one month.


Canelo talks of helping prove his brother, Víctor Manuel ‘Palettes’ Álvarez,’ innocence in the face of murder allegations in 2012, and the subsequent request to his siblings:

CANELO: It was very difficult because the public figure is me, right? I always try to tell my brothers and sisters, when they tell me, ‘I love you a lot.’ I said, ‘That’s good. It’s good that you love me a lot. But if you love me, don’t do stupid things. Because the person who they’re gonna go after, the one who’s gonna be affected will be me.’ So, it was very difficult for me at that time when they accused him… We proved it wasn’t true, but imagine your brother being accused of killing someone.


Canelo states he was less experienced and less mature when he lost to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2013, and that he’d knock out Floyd in a hypothetical bout where they fought each other in their primes.

CANELO: He’d have nothing to do with me. If we were both at our prime – our best prime – he wouldn’t have anything to do with me. Nothing… I would knock him out.

Later on, Canelo is dismissive of the upcoming exhibition fight between Logan Paul and Mayweather, but says the obvious outcome is another Mayweather victory.

BENSINGER: What do you think of his fight against Logan Paul?

CANELO: … It’s about making money is all… It’s really not relevant at all… It’s stupid.

BENSINGER: Who do you think wins?

CANELO: I think even the question is offensive: Mayweather, obviously.


Canelo and Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions parted ways in November, after 15 years together. Recently, De La Hoya told DAZN he could see a reunion in the future – “I’ve had one fighter who in the past, in all those 20 years, that wasn’t happy. But I’m pretty sure that I’ll be working with him once again. I have no doubt whatsoever. I mean, look, people always think that the grass is greener on the other side.”

Canelo’s strong words while speaking with Bensinger say otherwise:

CANELO: Look, I don’t like to talk much about people, but I’ve been a very loyal person, always. And I was very loyal, always with Golden Boy. [De La Hoya] is not Golden Boy. He doesn’t do anything in Golden Boy. He’s worried about drinking, and being involved in other things… The decisions are made by other people. When Richard Schaefer left Golden Boy, he took all the boxers… And he also wanted to take me – and I was the only boxer that stayed with Golden Boy, because I’m a loyal man. But then, later I understood why everyone had gone and why Richard Schaefer left. Because those who are in Golden Boy, they are only looking after their own benefit, not the boxer’s benefit.

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  • Canelo will be talking about Floyd his entire life. The same way GGG will be talking about Canelo. Woulda Shoulda Coulda. Canelo was 23 while Floyd was 36. At 21 Floyd was beating the best in his division Genaro Hernández and Diego Corrales.

    • Yes you have a point about the talking, but there are crucial differences, no one questioned Mayweathers victory against Canelo, most people I figure question Canelo’s draw against GGG, and even his victory is suprisingly widely questioned. I want it fair, it’s as simple as that, but big money too often yields score-cards I don’t agree with.
      And yet I believe that Canelo is the best boxer p4p today.

      • They do try and discredit Floyd’s victory over Canelo by saying the 23 year old Canelo “was too young” but Floyd on the other hand was a prime 36?

      • I think what hurts Canelo more is that Floyd really schooled him. He can talk about ages and primes all he wants, but the point is, Floyd just dealt with him with ease. I don’t see much evidence that that scenario would be flipped.

      • As stated that loss is not in the record books. If we are going to discuss fights that boxers actually lost, then how about Canelo vs GGG? There is no way the first fight was a draw. Secondly, let’s not forget when Erislandy Lara outboxes a light-heaveight Canelo. (The fight was scheduled at super welter but Canelo looked huge). Besides that clenbuterol wins lots of fights doesn’t it? Oops I forgot, it always is found in his system but it is always an accident. (Whenever he eats, bottles of clenbuterol just happen to have the cap and the label missing and the chef always mistakes it for spices.)

    • Canelo isn’t talking about Floyd. The interviewer brought it up. I’m sure he could give two squats about mayweather.

  • In all fairness, if all is true, it’s a reminder that Canelo has personal troubles in life just like we all do. In addition, when fame develops in one’s life, that person and their loved ones can be a target of the media, crime, or even political endeavors. Now, in the interview, Canelo speaks of beating Mayweather if they would have thought when both were in their primes. Yes, it’s possible, but in my opinion, Mayweather in his prime was an elusive machine who mastered the shoulder roll coupled with textbook counters. Canelo’s style of offense would have been working overtime to catch such a crafty fighter as Floyd. Either way, you slice it, we will never know since time has changed that possible matchup.

    • Scoob, all of these fighters do. That’s why i think it’s wrong for someone like bezerker to call Ryan Garcia a coward. No one knows what’s going on in their personal life. That line shouldn’t be crossed.

      • i do agree you should never make assumptions about someone’s personal life. What I do find fascinating, regarding the cultural shift with this generation, is that we are beginning to separate mental health issues from a general state of being. It has not been out of the ordinary for a boxer to accuse another boxer of being mentally weak. Mental fortitude is an attribute, like speed or punch power. For example, David Price was mentally weak, and many have criticised him for it. Many say Kell Brook was weak and was a quitter. When Conor McGregor beat Jose Aldo, he bullied him about being mentally weak the whole build up. Whether these cases were true or not, they are a discussion about mental strength. But if any of those fighters had been vocal about ‘mental wellness’ pre-fight does that mean we couldn’t have spoken about mental strength in sporting terms anymore? Surely, a ruthless future opponent of Garcia could start picking on him in the build up for being mentally weak? I don’t know the answer to this question. I just think it moves the goal posts a bit.

    • The best fight for best. Canelo avoids black fighters because he got humiliated against May weather!

    • Not so sure about that. I have seen videos that show, very graphic, what cartels do to kidnappers. But who knows, maybe it’s only to those who aren’t operating under their umbrella.

  • A prime canelo probably would beat a prime mayweather. The prime version of Canelo is a super middleweight, maybe even a light heavyweight. The prime version of Mayweather was 147 or below. It would be a replay of Canelo vs kahn. Canelo would simply be too big. (On fight night Canelo would probably be a cruiserweight after rehydrating etc). There is a reason Mayweather did not fight above 154. Also let’s not Forget Canelo had his chance and lost. He claimed he would do all of these things prior to getting into the ring with him the first time. GGG probably feels the same way. They did not fight in their prime. GGG was already declining. He was not the prime GGG. Canelo lost to Mayweather. Just let it go and move on. If he had given mayweather any trouble and the fans etc said Mayweather did not do well and Canelo gave him trouble then he would have gotten a rematch perhaps. It wasn’t the case though, after the second round or so, Mayweather just outclassed him (after feeling him out and figuring him out.)

  • good article. good interview. good read
    and thankyou Canelo. Yes, the whatever it is between Logan Paul and Mayweather is Stupid

  • Mayweather made Canelo a better fighter. If he did not fight Mayweather as a 22-23 yr old he would not be the fighter he is today!

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