Saul “Canelo” Alvarez has firmly established himself as one of boxing‘s best fighters. Alvarez‘s dominance in the ring lifted him into tremendous fame and popularity across the globe. However, that territory comes with potential personal life dangers leading down the path of negotiating his brother’s release from kidnappers.
Canelo Alvarez’s rise to boxing stardom
After Canelo Alvarez‘s first professional fight at age 15, he experienced a rapid ascension into boxing stardom.
Alvarez moved up the ranks behind his dominance in the ring in Mexico, winning the Jalisco welterweight title in his 15th match. Four years into his career, he won the North American Boxing Federation welterweight championship.
The Jalisco native continued to build his resume with notable wins over Miguel Cotto, Shane Mosley, and Austin Trout. His dominance earned him a shot against Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2013, which remains his only loss.
Since then, Alvarez has become a fine-tuned all-around boxer recording a 13-0-1 record. His lone draw during that stretch came against Gennady Golovkin, who he defeated the second time around. He’s recognized as one of the best fighters in the sports behind winning world championships in four weight classes.
However, his personal life nearly took a dark turn a few years ago.
Canelo Alvarez reveals startling details about his brother’s kidnapping
After the majority decision win over Golovkin in 2018, Canelo Alvarez’s personal life took a concerning turn.
In the days ahead of his fight against Rocky Fielding a few months later in December, Alvarez became engulfed with his brother’s kidnapping. Reports indicated that the kidnappers chose that time because the boxer was in line for a lucrative purse for the upcoming match.
During a recent interview on In Depth with Graham Bensinger, Alvarez revealed that he negotiated his brother’s release.
“In 2018, the Monday before the fight, and I was always on the phone….I negotiated everything for his release,” Alvarez said. “For three days I negotiated with [the kidnappers] to get them to release him.
“After I negotiated his release, I was still thinking, imagine if it was my daughter, or my mom or my dad, it would have been even more difficult for me. And on top of that, I had the fight on Saturday, and I had to do a thousand interviews [for the fight]. And nobody knew about it. I would tell my cousin, say this [to the kidnappers], and my cousin would tell me, [the kidnappers] sent this, and I would say, tell them this.”
Beyond saving his brother’s life, the remarkable part is that Alvarez kept it under wraps and cruised to a convincing knockout win in the third round against Fielding.
Rare visits to Mexico due to safety concerns
The entire experience left a significant impact on Alvarez’s comfort with living in Mexico.
The 30-year-old no longer feels safe in the country he grew up in because of the dangers that come with his fame.
“I have security here because of people who can be greedy, those who steal at stoplights,” Alvarez said to Graham Bensinger. “There’s a lot of insecurity, too much insecurity. This is why I’m not here in Mexico much anymore, because it’s not safe.
“Worse still for me and for my family. Too much insecurity. The government is not concerned about this, they’re concerned about other things.”
As disappointing as that all may be, it’s a reality that Alvarez has comes to terms with in his life.