Back in 2019, WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol outboxed Joe Smith over twelve rounds - picking up a near shut-out decision on the official cards.
Earlier this month, Bivol put in another impressive performance when he outboxed Mexican superstar Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez to secure a dominant twelve round unanimous decision.
When Canelo announced his plan to return to 175-pounds to challenge Bivol for his WBA belt, Smith felt there was a high possibility of an upset in the makings.
Smith explained that Bivol's style was all wrong for a fighter like Canelo, who still holds the undisputed championship at the super middleweight limit of 168.
"I thought Bivol had a great chance to win the fight. Canelo is used to facing aggressive guys, constantly trying to knock them out and coming forward. Bivol is not that kind of guy, he’s going to pick his shots and move, I pictured the fight the way it went," Smith told The DAZN Boxing Show.
Smith, who now holds the WBO world title at light heavyweight, could very well find himself in a rematch with Bivol in the near future.
Next month, Smith will collide with WBC, IBF champion Artur Beterviev in a three belt unification. The winner will certainly find himself in line to fight Bivol, with the victor being crowned the undisputed world champion at 175.
"I believe at this point I’m ready to face the best, I believe I am one of the best and can beat a lot of the best," Smith said.