This coming Saturday night, March 8th, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Mexican superstar Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez (42-1-1, 30 KO's) will do battle against another Mexican fighter Alfredo Angulo (22-3, 18 KO's).
Both of these fighters are coming off recent losses and trying to regain what they lost in the light-middleweight division. Speaking of losses, not many boxers in the sport today, get the opportunity to display their skills on Pay-Per-View after a recent loss, unless it's a rematch. The young red-head 23 year-old Canelo seems to be just that marketable or is he?
Six months ago Canelo lost a one-sided fight against the undefeated pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr. That upset left him and all of his die-hard fans devastated. He barely landed a punch on Mayweather. It was a complete embarrassment for the younger fighter and his followers.
I happen to be in Las Vegas, Nevada that very same weekend of September 14, 2013 to celebrate my 50th birthday and watch the big fight. What I witnessed that night was unbelievable. It was the incredibly noisy-crowd leading up to the record-breaking numbers in attendance during weigh-in the day before; dozens of celebrities and movie stars alike arriving before and during the fight; and the subdued crowd exiting the MGM Grand after the fight. It was the biggest boxing event ever recorded in the history of the sport. Simply a mind-blowing experience that I will not soon forget."
CEO-Richard Schaefer and the Golden Boy label have invested quite generously in the career of Canelo. If this was Professional Football, Basketball or Baseball he would be considered their franchise player, even though Mayweather still resides under that same umbrella or uses their service when promoting one of his big fights. Say what you will—but until Schaefer and owner Oscar De La Hoya feel that Canelo is damaged goods, they will continue to lay out the red carpet for him any time he steps into that square circle.
Is this fight really Pay-Per-View worthy?
Well, let's take a look at Alfredo Angulo. Some would say that he is tailor-made for Canelo. His style of fighting is no different from former welterweight champion Antonio Margarito. If you want to make Canelo look good against an opponent, Angulo would definitely be the guy. Like Margarito, he will take punch after punch and keep on coming with very little head movement at all. Not much speed either. By the time Canelo has well placed his power punches, with the use of his legs and quick feet, he would be out of the way before Angulo can return punishment. Wait a minute. "That's easier said than done."
The difference between Margarito and Angulo is the competition they both have faced. Margarito lost fights against world-class boxers such as Shane Mosley, Miguel Cotto, Paul Williams and Manny Pacquiao who are all future Hall of Famers. The most recognizable fighters Angulo have on his resume are Kermit Citron, James Kirkland and Erislandy Lara whom he suffered defeat from all three. All of his wins are against no names.
There are many fans who felt this fight should have been on regular Showtime boxing instead of PPV. Many of them have said they will not buy this fight. Even though the undercard isn't that bad, the price tag that goes along with ordering the fight PPV is just not feasible. There is not enough talent on the fight card to make them want to shove out the money to purchase it. What if they're wrong about this event? "Styles do make fights," and these two combatants could be a recipe for Armageddon. After all it is labeled "Toe to Toe."
Maybe these two, being the type of fighters they are, will produce something special in the ring. One thing that has always charmed fight fans is an old fashion action-packed slugfest. Both of these fighters have warrior spirits and capable of producing such an event. But will they? There is no question that Angulo would put his life on the line to become victorious on Saturday night—especially on a stage of this magnitude. He's all heart. Can the same be said for Canelo? Some of the spectators who watched his previous controversial win over former champion Austin Trout could easily have other thoughts.