Canelo Alvarez rival and boxing badboy Billy Joe Saunders has engaged in more provocative behavior ahead of their super-middleweight clash in Texas on Saturday, teasing the Mexican over his infamous “tainted beef” drug test shame.
The pair faced off on Wednesday evening in the US, with Saunders – who, like Tyson Fury hails from the Traveller community – telling his Mexican dance partner, “the gypsies are here”.
He then moved on to a drug test Canelo failed in 2018, when he was set to face Gennady Golovkin in a rematch of their draw the previous year for the unified middleweight championship.
Testing positive for traces of the banned substance clenbuterol, the pound-for-pound great blamed the outcome on contaminated meat.
“You had loads of beef? The Mexican beef? You like that beef? You love the beef? Juicy beef?,” Saunders asked.
“You’ve never been in the ring with someone like me. Walk away, you walk away,” the Brit added, while receiving an unfazed “yeah, yeah yeah” from his opposite number in return.
Alvarez then mentioned Saunders’ own failed drug test, when oxilofrine, a fat-burning drug, was detected in his system before his fight against Demetrius Andrade.
“It was actually him who tested positive – twice actually,” said Canelo. “In my case, it was clenbuterol – the minimum, the content from the meat. It was actually him who tested positive twice.”
On Twitter, Canelo posted a picture of them facing off with the caption: “Less talk, more action”.
When asked why he hadn’t shown for their scheduled first face off, Saunders told reporters: “Yesterday, I was in my room playing with my balls.
“There was no time for media yesterday because it was my time for playing with my balls.”
Earlier this week, the fighters and their camps were involved in another heated exchange in a disagreement over the size of the ring at the Cowboys Stadium raged.
Tom Saunders, the WBO champion’s father, claimed that talks had broken down beyond repair despite his son accepting a ring which was 2ft smaller than the maximum 24ft size allowed.
He added that Canelo, a counter-puncher who goes on the front foot to walk down his opponents with a series of body blows, wanted the ring to span just 20ft.
Warning: video contains swearing
Passing through a hotel on Tuesday, Canelo was told to “grow some b*llocks” by team Saunders.
The 30-year-old responded by calling his antagonist a “f*cking p*ssy” and, in another incident, gave Saunders’ camp a thumbs down from a distance.
“We respect you, you are the champion – there’s no need to be like that, come on. We just want fairness, that’s all. I’m just asking him a question,” insisted the same individual, who had told Alvarez to grow a pair.
“The truth is, I don’t care about the size of the ring. I’m going to go in there and do my job,” remarked Canelo.
“It’s not the only excuse that he’s had, he’s had plenty of excuses. I’m just going to go in there and do what I got to do.
“Nothing frustrates me. I’m just focused on winning on Saturday. I’m calm.”
While the mind games and one-upmanship continue, promotor Eddie Hearn and Alvarez trainer Eddy Reynoso celebrated the fact that a 70,000 attendance at the weekend will smash the record for the biggest indoor crowd in American boxing history.
That was set for the Muhammad Ali vs. Leon Spinks heavyweight championship rematch in New Orleans in 1978, which received a whopping 63,352 punters.
While Ali reclaimed his belts at the Superdome, boxing legend Roy Jones Jr believes a similar result as the original split decision victory for Spinks – dubbed the Upset of the Year by Ring Magazine at the time – could be on the cards.
“I give Billy Joe a really good chance,” Jones told IFL TV. “The toughest two fights [Canelo’s] had in his career, to me, were Floyd Mayweather Jr, who’s a pure boxer, and a southpaw by the name of Erislandy Lara, who was a boxer.
The biggest indoor crowd in American boxing history was the Ali v Spinks rematch in 1978 in New Orleans with an attendance of 63,352. This Saturday we take the record in Dallas. Last few tickets available here! https://t.co/GknyEDnH6r – thanks @Idecboxing for the stat!
— Eddie Hearn (@EddieHearn) May 6, 2021
“So if you think about those two guys, who’s Billy Joe closely related to the boxing ring? Those two guys.
“He’s a boxer, he’s southpaw, and he can punch, but he thinks boxing first, much like Tyson Fury. When you got a guy like that, the only problem Billy Joe’s going to have is, can he last long enough early to get to those late rounds without sustaining any injuries, cuts, headbutts, anything?
“He has to figure out how to make up for that ring rust before he gets in there, because if he can get into the fight right away, he has a very good chance of winning it.
Warning: video contains swearing
Disrespect. But I wouldn’t expect anything less from the classless, immature, Saunders.
— kevin johnstone (@kevvyboy79) May 6, 2021
“If he doesn’t get into the fight right away, then he’ll get blown away, but he’s a very smart guy, he’s a boxer, he’s a smart boxer.”
Less impressed by Saunders, though, were online boxing enthusiasts disgusted when he told a Mexican journalist his breath “smells like sh*t”.
“As a Saunders fan, I have to say that is horrible and disrespectful,” admitted one.
“Disrespect. But I wouldn’t expect anything less from the classless, immature Saunders,” remarked a Saunders critic, while another warned: “He’s an idiot who’s getting slammed.”
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News