Premier Boxing Champions

LAS VEGAS -- When it comes to his plan of taking over the sport of boxing and becoming one of its biggest stars and best pound-for-pound fighters, David Benavidez believes it will happen with or without the help of undisputed super middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez. 

Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs), a former two-time champion at 168 pounds who never lost his titles in the ring, has been the No. 1 contender to Alvarez for three years and, most recently, the WBC interim titleholder yet he could not convince the 33-year-old Mexican icon, nor the sanctioning bodies that refuse to strip his titles, of making one of the biggest fights the sports could produce. 

Instead, the 27-year-old "Mexican Monster," which is the nickname given to Benavidez by Mike Tyson, will take his career into his own hands on Saturday when he moves up to light heavyweight to challenge former champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk (20-1, 16 KOs) for the WBC interim title at 175 pounds.

"To be honest with you, I did everything in my power possible to make that fight happen," Benavidez told CBS Sports at Thursday's media day. "I beat the fighters that they told me I couldn't beat. I was No. 1 contender for the past three years but I had my hands tied. 

"I did everything in my power possible to make it happen. The only reason this fight is not happening is because Canelo doesn't want it to happen because he knows damn well that when he faces me, I'm taking all of his titles home with me."

One thing you won't hear, however, is Benavidez going out of his way to trash Alvarez for avoiding him, which many fans and critics have done. He has too much business of his own to take care of.

Should Benavidez win, he has already been named by Turki Alalshikh, Saudi Arabia's chairman of the general entertainment authority who is charge of the kingdom's massive boxing budget, as the fighter who will next face the winner of October's undisputed light heavyweight showdown against unbeaten champions Artur Beterbiev (20-0, 20 KOs) and Dmitry Bivol (23-0, 12 KOs). 

"I can't keep thinking about what [Alvarez] is doing and what his strategy is," Benavidez said. "I've done my job and I've done my job perfectly. I think it will happen but I don't know when. I think this is too big of a fight to leave on the table like that. Everybody wants to see this fight and I want to be in this fight, too. I want to show the people that I'm the best in the world but I don't know when that is going to happen.

"Since I was a little kid, I never had that thought in my head, like, 'Oh, I want to face Canelo.' My main objective is to become the best of whatever weight class that I am in and I was trying to do that at 168 [pounds]. I tried to unify the titles but I did not get that opportunity so I came up to 175. Now, this fight is going to put me in position to fight for all of the titles at 175 and I'm going to continue to be a dominant force in whatever weight class I choose to fight in."

Benavidez also confirmed a rumor delivered earlier that day by boxing trainer Stephen "Breadman" Edwards about how Benavidez not only previously sparred the likes of Bivol, Beterbiev and Gvodzyk in the past, but he had great success. 

"I put it on all of them, and they know that, too," Benavidez said. "But I'm not showing no disrespect as they are all great fighters. I know I have to come 100 percent prepared for each one of them because all of those guys are beasts."