Making the Rounds: Stunning allegations in Canelo Alvarez's case vs. Oscar De La Hoya

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A weekly look at boxing's hottest topics.

A federal judge in California on Friday dismissed Canelo Alvarez’s lawsuit against DAZN, Golden Boy Promotions and Golden Boy CEO Oscar De La Hoya on technical legal grounds, and gave Alvarez until Sept. 28 to refile the suit correctly.

Assuming the suit is refiled correctly, there are two astonishing allegations in the suit that are related.

First, the suit alleges that De La Hoya gave the final right to approve Alvarez’s opponents to both Alvarez and DAZN. Alvarez had that right in his Oct. 17 agreement he signed with Golden Boy, but the suit alleges DAZN acquired that right in its deal with Golden Boy that was finalized on Oct. 11 in exchange for the right to broadcast Alvarez’s fights.

Sources said Alvarez was furious when he discovered that, and the DAZN deal nearly fell apart at the last minute. According to his suit, “Notably, the Alvarez Contract did not mention that DAZN would have any right to accept or reject any opponents selected by Alvarez.”

That’s when the second, even more astounding allegation comes in. Paragraph 31 of Alvarez’s original lawsuit notes that De La Hoya personally guaranteed liability for DAZN’s payments to Alvarez.

Thus, De La Hoya could potentially be on the hook for the $280 million Alvarez is seeking in the suit.

Canelo Alvarez, left, looks at promoter and former boxer Oscar de la Hoya during a news conference Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2019, in Las Vegas. Alvarez is scheduled to fight Sergey Kovalev in a WBO light heavyweight title bout Saturday in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Canelo Alvarez’s lawsuit against DAZN, Golden Boy Promotions and Golden Boy CEO Oscar De La Hoya was dismissed Friday on technical legal grounds, but Alvarez has until Sept. 28 to refile the suit correctly. (AP Photo/John Locher)

The suit notes that DAZN agreed to pay Golden Boy $40 million per Alvarez bout, and Alvarez was to get $35 million of that each fight. The suit said that Golden Boy received a “reduced license fee,” for the Dec. 15 bout with Rocky Fielding. Alvarez was paid $15 million for that fight, the suit reported, but Golden Boy’s share is unknown.

Paragraph 31 makes a considerable allegation against De La Hoya. It reads:

The Alvarez Contract required Golden Boy to pay Alvarez guaranteed payments totaling $365 million for his next eleven boxing matches ($15 million for the December 2018 bout with Rocky Fielding and $35 million dollars for each of his next ten bouts thereafter), expected to be on or about May 5 and September 16 of the years 2019 to 2023. Pursuant to the Alvarez Contract, Oscar De La Hoya, Golden Boy Promotions’ CEO, personally assumed liability for all guaranteed payments.

As part of the deal it made to bring Alvarez’s fights to DAZN, Golden Boy negotiated another deal with the streaming service to put its other shows on DAZN.

This was critical for Golden Boy because less than three weeks prior to Alvarez signing with DAZN, HBO announced it would no longer do boxing following an Oct. 27, 2018, card. At that point, Golden Boy rivals Top Rank and Premier Boxing Champions had television output deals. Top Rank had a long-term deal with ESPN while the PBC was working with Fox and Showtime.

It would have been a killer for Golden Boy not to have a deal with a broadcast service that would have produced regular income for it.

That irritated Alvarez as well. Though none of the parties have commented publicly, several sources have said Alvarez’s issues are more with De La Hoya personally and Golden Boy than with DAZN. ESPN Deportes quoted Alvarez manager Eddy Reynoso as saying, “It would be a lie to say that we have a great relationship [with Golden Boy]. We already had some disagreements behind the scenes. There wasn’t a great relationship.”

Alvarez and DAZN did not have a contract with each other. The contracts at issue in this case were between Alvarez, Golden Boy and De La Hoya on one side and Golden Boy, De La Hoya and DAZN on the other.

The lawsuit also would allow DAZN’s lawyers to talk directly with Alvarez and his lawyers. If there is no lawsuit, Golden Boy could accuse DAZN of tortious interference in their deal.

Though the suit has been withdrawn, this case isn’t going away any time soon.

Critical week for Fury-Wilder 3

Top Rank hopes to put the rubber match between WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and former champion Deontay Wilder on Dec. 19 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas with a limited number of fans.

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Las Vegas’ convention business is struggling badly, putting the casinos in a terrible financial spot. And the National Finals Rodeo, which has been a huge financial windfall for the town and its casinos for more than 25 years, has been canceled.

Thus, there is hope in the casino industry that the fight could occur at Allegiant Stadium with 10,000 to 15,000 fans well spaced.

This week will be critical to that effort in getting it done.

Fury is a -290 favorite at BetMGM. Wilder is +230.

Whyte, Povetkin agree on rematch

One heavyweight fight that is official is a Nov. 21 rematch between Alexander Povetkin and Dillian Whyte. After being down twice in the fourth round of their Aug. 22 bout, Povetkin rallied and KO’d Whyte in the fifth with a perfect uppercut.

That made Povetkin the interim WBC heavyweight champion. Whyte had a rematch clause which he quickly executed.

A win in this fight could seal Povetkin’s Hall of Fame credentials. He won the gold medal at super heavyweight in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece.

Boxing - Dillian Whyte & Alexander Povetkin Press Conference - Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel, Manchester, Britain - March 4, 2020   Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin pose with promoter Eddie Hearn after the press conference   Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff
Dillian Whyte vs. Alexander Povetkin 2 has been scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020. (Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff)

He’s now 36-2-1 with his only losses to Wladimir Klitschko and Anthony Joshua and is 6-2 in his eight heavyweight title fights. The strongest argument against him is his lack of a signature win.

His biggest win was probably against Chris Byrd in 2007, but that was toward the end of Byrd’s career. But he has solid wins over Byrd, Whyte, Hasim Rahman, Manuel Charr, Carlos Takam, Mariusz Wach, David Price and Michael Hunter.

Porter doing a podcast

Ex-welterweight champion Shawn Porter has jumped on the podcast bandwagon and is producing “The Porter Way” podcast.

“It’s going to be unique; it’s going to be different; it’s going to be everything you want to hear,” Porter said. “It’s going to be entertaining and it’s going to be fun. … My vision for the podcast is to extend who I am to all of you viewers.”

Porter said he’ll talk about sports other than boxing. The show is available on YouTube.

Braekhus to fight McCaskill in 2021

Cecilia Braekhus, the former undisputed women’s welterweight champion, has chosen to activate her rematch clause with Jessica McCaskill and the two will meet in early 2021, Matchroom Sport announced.

McCaskill handed Braekhus her first defeat on Aug. 15 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, winning a split decision.

“It was the weakest performance in my whole career,” Braekhus said. “I still feel I won, or could have gotten a draw, and when I thought about that, I knew I could beat her in a rematch. I didn’t want to go out with a career-worst performance either. I definitely owe that to my fans. If this was a fight where I lost to a better fighter, had been in my best shape and had given it my all, then fine, I could retire, but that was not the case here. She gave her everything in the ring and I wanted to give her props for that. I knew what I was going through and what I was struggling with, for everyone this was just a tough time. But we need to meet again under different circumstances.”

He said it

“I’ve had so many good fighters in my career, but Jermall is right up there at the top with Evander Holyfield, Vernon Forrest and Pernell Whitaker. He works hard and pays attention to what he has to do. The thing that separates them is that he knows how to watch his opponent and he knows what he’s in for.” — Trainer Ronnie Shields on unbeaten WBC middleweight champion Jermall Charlo, who fights Sergiy Derevyanchenko in a pay-per-view bout on Sept. 26.

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