By Jake Donovan
PROVIDENCE, R.I.—Saturday night was supposed to be about Demetrius Andrade establishing himself as a viable candidate for superfights with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin.
So after selling out the available inventory for his long overdue homecoming, the unbeaten middleweight titlist was baffled why the media wanted to talk about any other opponent early Sunday morning.
“I want to fight Canelo. I want to fight GGG,” Andrade (28-0, 17KOs) told a group of reporters after delivering a 12-round shutout performance over Poland’s Maciej Sulecki.
The bout aired live on DAZN in front of 7,136 in attendance at Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island, Andrade’s first time fighting in his true hometown as a pro. Prior to the June 29 show, the suggestion was that Andrade boasted an undesirable in-ring style and lacked a sustained fan base to make demands of such big fights.
Saturday’s live attendance changed the perception that he’s not a draw, although his team will tell you that never should have been the case.
“In our time in the United States, of the shows we’ve done over here, Demetrius Andrade is responsible for the two biggest gates once you get past the Anthony Joshua-Andy Ruiz show (on June 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York City). He did it in Boston just eight months ago, and now here again (on Saturday) at home.”
Andrade made his DAZN debut last October, scoring a 12-round win over Walter Kautondokwa to win a vacant world title an hour away in Boston, Mass. The win came barely a month after Alvarez—the recognized lineal middleweight champion—outpointed Golovkin in their rematch last September to become a unified titlist, adding another strap in a 12-round win over Daniel Jacobs this past May.
The title collected by Andrade last fall is now the last piece of the puzzle, and is still available as Alvarez remains without an opponent for a planned September 14 return. Rumors continue to swirl of his planning to move up to light heavyweight to take on three-time titlist Sergey Kovalev, although that has yet to be validated by Golden Boy Promotions.
Whatever the case, the sense is that both Alvarez and Golovkin will look elsewhere other than Andrade for their next in-ring opportunity. With that belief came the wonder if the unbeaten southpaw—who moved up to middleweight in 2017 after having twice served as a super welterweight titlist—would consider campaigning at super middleweight where he could face unbeaten title holders Callum Smith and Billy Joe Saunders.
Andrade initially made the mistake of falling down the rabbit hole, answering questions as they came until realizing the conversation wasn’t about to head back in the right direction.
“Look, this ain’t about me moving up and facing these other guys,” exclaimed Andrade. “What everyone here (in the media on Saturday night) needs to do is go out there and let it be known. Demetrius Andrade wants Canelo. Demetrius Andrade wants GGG. I’m not thinking about any other fights.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox