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Oscar De La Hoya to meet with Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez on Friday

Oscar De La Hoya focusing on getting 'Canelo' his next bout not Mayweather-Pacquiao

Oscar De La Hoya hopes Floyd Mayweather Jr. fights Manny Pacquiao and believes it’s a mistake that Mayweather hasn’t already committed.

But De La Hoya also has a big bout to promote for his star fighter, former light-middleweight champion Saul "Canelo" Alvarez, so he’ll continue that work Friday in a planned personal meeting with Alvarez in San Diego.

De La Hoya attended a news conference inside his Los Angeles offices Thursday for the Feb. 27 International Boxing Federation bantamweight title defense of Coachella’s Randy Caballero (22-0) vs. Mexico’s Alberto Guevara (19-2) at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio.

De La Hoya said while there have been discussions about having Alvarez fight James Kirkland May 2 at San Antonio’s Alamodome on HBO, he’s going to revisit all options in his talk with Alvarez.

“We’re discussing the different possibilities, whether it’s Kirkland, [former welterweight world champion Timothy] Bradley is on the table, and I’m not saying [Miguel] Cotto is off,” De La Hoya said. “That’s the fight people want to see.”

De La Hoya did say an Alvarez bout against middleweight champion Cotto was off in a chat with reporters Saturday in Las Vegas after Cotto and his manager let several deadlines pass without striking a deal to fight Alvarez.

Smartly, Cotto is waiting to see if Mayweather will agree to fight Pacquiao. If Mayweather doesn’t, Cotto is the next-best option after he bruised up Mayweather in their 2012 bout.

De La Hoya said, “If he wants to,” Cotto can return to Alvarez talks.

“Cotto pulled out. As a fighter who wants to have the best fights for the fans, ‘Canelo’ is never going to close the door on Cotto,” De La Hoya said.

De La Hoya said he and Alvarez will decide if the May 2 fight will be in San Antonio, or at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas.

“I want to solidify everything,” De La Hoya said.

It would help if Mayweather would commit to a Pacquiao fight, despite the status of in-progress negotiations between Showtime and HBO for a joint pay-per-view broadcast of the bout.

While boxing officials close to Mayweather have said he still lists Pacquiao as his first choice, he wants the TV deal to be handled in a way that benefits Showtime to his satisfaction.

“I really feel as a fight fan that Mayweather doesn’t want to fight Pacquiao, that he doesn’t want to lose,” De La Hoya said, adding that as someone who once occupied the position as the world's most popular fighter that Mayweather’s stature is capable of ending any difficulties with the networks by voicing his desire for the super-fight.

“Absolutely, he can do that," De La Hoya said. "The fighter has all the power here.

“But I think he wants to stay away from Manny Pacquiao as long as he can, so he doesn’t lose.”

De La Hoya and Alvarez are boxing Mayweather into something of a corner to not select a Cotto fight because there’s likely going to be less public appetite for a rematch, and because Alvarez would fight either Kirkland or Bradley in a non-pay-per-view HBO fight on the same night.

It helped to draw “1.5 million homes,” in the first Mayweather-Cotto fight “because ‘Canelo’ was on the card,” De La Hoya said. “Making Mayweather-Cotto the same night ‘Canelo’ will be on HBO will be a mistake."

“If I was Showtime, I would really be thinking twice about going May 2 against 'Canelo.'”

De La Hoya has said he will shift Alvarez off May 2 if Mayweather were to fight Pacquiao.

Twitter: @latimespugmire

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