For the first time in a long time, Canelo Alvarez will enter the ring as a decided underdog. With the Mexican star suffering the first defeat of his career in approximately a decade at the hands of Dmitry Bivol last year, the 32-year-old has vowed to make amends.

Yet, despite his promises, oddsmakers believe that his Russian counterpart will score another victory in their impending rematch. Of course, Alvarez (59-2-2, 39 KOs) will first have to be willing to make certain concessions at the negotiating table. During their original showdown, Bivol (21-0, 11 KOs) happily welcomed Alvarez to the 175-pound division. However, in their possible sequel, the WBA light heavyweight champion has made his feelings known that he would rather move down in weight to challenge Alvarez for his IBF, WBO, WBA, and WBC super middleweight titles.

Regardless of where their showdown ultimately takes place, Oscar Valdez, a former two-division titlist, is convinced that the end result will be entirely different this time around.

“I think Canelo takes him,” said Valdez to ESNEWS recently.  

Valdez’s need to go against the grain and choose Alvarez in the upset is likely to be met by numerous eye rolls and sly remarks. The pair, for a number of years, have trained side by side under the watchful eye of trainer Eddy Reynoso.

During those countless gym sessions together, the two have formed a bond and close friendship. Be that as it may, Valdez is pushing back on the narrative that he’s simply picking Alvarez due to their relationship. In fact, in a moment of pure candor, Valdez pulls back the curtains and reveals that Alvarez’s focus just wasn't where it was supposed to be.

“I don’t say that because obviously we work together and he’s my friend. I say it because I see him work out. I think one of his mistakes was concentrating on other things prior to the fight.”