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David Benavidez

David Benavidez beats Gvozdyk, calls out Canelo

David Benavidez passes light heavyweight test

LAS VEGAS – David Benavidez passed his first test in the light heavyweight division Saturday night. Then his cute, 3-year-old son Anthony called out Canelo Alvarez next.

Wearing a miniature version of his father’s gold and black dress shirt, Anthony stood atop the dais and showcased his combinations. Then the Baby Monster followed his father’s lead, reminding the world that they want a shot at Canelo Alvarez.

“Canelo,” Anthony said to the roar of the media.

Family goal

The Benavidezes were in a good mood after David Benavidez beat Oleksandr Gvozdyk to earn the interim WBC light heavyweight title in his first bout in that weight class. Benavidez easily won via unanimous decision in the co-main event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. In the other co-main event, Gervonta “Tank” Davis knocked out Frank Martin in the eighth round.

Afterward, Benavidez turned his attention to Canelo, the legendary undisputed champion who has refused to fight him. Despite going up to the 175-pound division, Benavidez wants to drop back to 168 pounds to fight Canelo.


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“I want to invoke my mandatory right,” Benavidez said when asked about Canelo. “It’s something I’ve worked for my whole life … the past three years. 

“It’s something that’s rightfully mine. Like I said, this (Gvozdyk fight) is the perfect opportunity for me to come up and win another belt. I still can make 168 (pounds) easy. Still looking to come down to 168.”

David Benavidez remains perfect

Benavidez, 27, improved his perfect record to 29-0. He suffered a ligament injury in his right hand leading up to the fight, Benavidez says. The Phoenix native was pleased with his performance nonetheless.

“I had him hurt a couple of times,” Benavidez said. “I wasn’t throwing a lot of combinations because I reinjured my hand in the third round. I tore my right ligament four weeks before the fight, and I hurt my left hand in camp. 

“I’m proud of myself because I also got a cut three weeks ago and I pushed through and gave the fans a good fight.”

Tank destroys Martin

Davis, the undefeated three-division champion, easily defended his WBA lightweight world championship before a crowd of 13,249. Davis was as ruthless as little Anthony Benavidez was cute Saturday.

He improved to 30-0 with the 28th knockout of his career. Davis’ knockout blow was so devastating, Tank knew immediately that the fight was over. He celebrated atop one of the ropes before the 10-count was over.

“I knew he wasn’t getting back up because of the way he fell,” David said. “And I knew he was gonna tire himself out. That was the whole gameplan.”

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