Canelo's first fight in post-Golden Boy era sold to DAZN
Mexican boxer Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez has announced that his next fight will be on DAZN, just a week after his lucrative contract with the international over-the-top streaming platform was ripped up when he parted ways with Golden Boy Promotions.
Alvarez will take on the UK's Callum Smith for the WBA and Ring Magazine world super-middleweight titles on 19 December at a yet undecided venue.
The fight will air in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide, excluding Mexico, on the new DAZN global platform that launches early next month.
It will be the second big fight in a week on the platform, following the world heavyweight title fight between the UK's Anthony Joshua and Bulgaria's Kubrat Pulev on 12 December. The service will cost £1.99 ($2.65) or €1.99 ($2.37) per month.
Eddie Hearn, managing director of Matchroom Sport, which represents Smith, said: “Canelo is a fearless competitor who constantly challenges himself against great champions and this will be a thrilling battle for 168lb supremacy. It’s a pleasure to be working with Canelo and Eddy Reynoso and we look forward to a spectacular event on December 19.”
Ed Breeze, executive vice-president of rights at DAZN, added: “We’re thrilled to work with Canelo Alvarez, Eddy Reynoso and Matchroom on this new venture. Canelo vs. Smith is a perfect fight to support DAZN’s global launch in December as we look forward to introducing the platform to sports fans around the world.”
It was confirmed last week that Alvarez had parted ways with promoter Golden Boy, headed up by Oscar de la Hoya, and ended his 11-fight, $365 million deal with DAZN.
The split came two months after Alvarez sued both the streaming platform and Golden Boy, for damages of at least $280 million, filing a lawsuit in a federal court in California accusing the two parties of failing to honour the terms of the contract.
The suit was settled, with Golden Boy receiving no money as its contract with Alvarez came to an end.
As a result of the pandemic, but also wrangling over the DAZN contract, Alvarez has not fought this year, with the company claiming that Golden Boy had not fulfilled its obligation to deliver one premier fight per year.
Since signing the deal with DAZN in 2018, Alvarez has had three pay-per-view fights on the OTT platform, against the UK’s Rocky Fielding, USA’s Daniel Jacobs and Russia’s Sergey Kovalev.
He was set for a super middleweight bout against the UK’s Billy Joe Saunders on 2 May, when DAZN's global OTT offering was due to launch, but it was called off due to the pandemic.
Meanwhile in Germany, DAZN has partnered with Vodafone, with the telecoms company becoming the first reseller of the service in the market.
For a discounted price of €9.99 per month for a one-year contract, customers will get full access to DAZN via the app and receive two complimentary linear HD channels, showing the best of DAZN, as part of the enhanced package.
DAZN1 and DAZN2 each show around 16 hours of the best sports content every day, including soccer's Uefa Champions League, Europa League and Bundesliga.
The 'full DAZN experience' - all live and original content and features including alternative audio feeds, catch-up and highlights - will only be accessible via the app,
Ben King, chief subscription officer, DAZN, said: “DAZN’s philosophy is to make premium sport more accessible and affordable for all fans. This consumer-centric partnership with Vodafone now brings DAZN to more than five million German households, regardless of whether they can access the app on their set top box and lets them pay for all their entertainment on a single bill. It is a great example of how entertainment services and operators can collaborate together to deliver more intuitive and satisfying viewing experiences for all sport fans.”
Rolf Wierig, global head of entertainment at Vodafone, added: “This extends our existing partnership with DAZN and perfectly demonstrates Vodafone’s positioning as a leading video content aggregation platform, delivering a superior experience across high-quality TV and flexible on-demand video streaming, with best-in-class service provider cooperation. We extend a very warm welcome to all the fantastic new high definition channels DAZN will bring to our GigaTV premium sports line-up in Germany.”The DAZN app was recently pre-installed on Vodafone’s GigaTV entertainment platform in Germany, with the app already integrated on the Vodafone TV Box in Italy.