Canelo Alvarez has filed a lawsuit against Golden Boy Promotions and broadcaster DAZN after being unable to agree terms for his next fight.
The Mexican star has been inactive since a WBO light-heavyweight title win over Sergey Kovalev last November, despite being linked with a variety of opponents, including British duo Callum Smith and Billy Joe Saunders.
Canelo had been expected to return on his traditional fight date of Cinco de Mayo, the Mexican holiday weekend in May, but a fight failed to materialise, and the 30-year-old has launched a legal battle, with a return date yet to be established.
The four-weight world champion has issued a lawsuit against his promoter Oscar De La Hoya and Golden Boy Promotions, and streaming broadcast partner, DAZN, for an alleged breach of contract, as well as other transgressions, and is reportedly seeking damages of at least $280m (£216m).
Alvarez said in a statement: “I’m the pound-for-pound No 1 in the world. I’m not scared of any opponent in the ring, and I’m not going to let failures of my broadcaster or promoters keep me out of the ring.
“I filed the lawsuit so I can get back to boxing and give my fans the show they deserve.”
WBA champion Smith and WBO title holder Saunders had already indicated earlier this week that they were pursuing alternative options after a prolonged wait for a potential super-middleweight fight with Canelo.
Smith’s trainer Joe Gallagher told Sky Sports: “I wanted Callum Smith out in October. I want him out in November. There is a cut-off point. There are fights there, and (IBF champion) Caleb Plant is a very good fight for him.”
Saunders has also tweeted: “Looks like the big one won’t be happening Alvarez but still @BooBooAndrade or Callum Smith should be made for November.”