The Sept. 14 match between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez for the WBA Super Light Middleweight title was a highly anticipated one. Both boxers were undefeated prior to the fight, and only one could walk away the winner. The 23-year-old Alvarez had won 30 of his 42 matches via knockout, while the 36-year-old Mayweather is a veteran of the sport.
“The One: Mayweather vs. Canelo” was streamed live to many theaters across the nation, including Cinemark 14 in Chico, via Fathom Events. The actual event took place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. This was the second boxing match this year to be streamed to movie theaters, and the picture and sound were perfect. This time around, every seat in the theater was nearly full. It was the busiest that the Chico Events Examiner had seen for any Fathom Event he has attended, and the audience was really into the fight.
It was a well-fought match, even though there were some cheap shots from both boxers. Mayweather proved to be the easy victor, but Canelo showed the world that he is a strong challenger.
The first two rounds had both Canelo and Mayweather performing well on defense and offense. Mayweather landed more punches than Canelo for the entire match, but Canelo did get in a few jabs and hooks, too. The low blow from Canelo occurred in the fourth round, and Mayweather exchanged some words with the Mexican fighter. There were moments that it felt like it was a rivalry match, when, in fact, it was the first time either boxer had fought each other.
The audience at the MGM Grand seemed more in favor for Canelo – with chants of “Mexico!” echoing throughout the auditorium. Those in favor of Mayweather retaliated with chants of “USA!,” which drew boos from the Canelo fans.
Another cheap shot from Canelo came in round six, but it seemed to be in reaction to a kidney shot delivered by Mayweather. After a brief dispute about the incident, the two continued the match. While Mayweather was in complete control for most of the match, Canelo seemed to pull through in the last couple of rounds – showing his toughness and energy, and proving how much of a great fighter he is.
When the final bell rang, and the decision had to be determined by the judges, the match resulted in a majority decision. One judge saw the match as a draw, even though many – including Mayweather – were pretty sure he had more power over Canelo. The other two judges ruled Mayweather as the winner of the match.
The match previous to the Mayweather/Alvarez one was another tough battle. The undefeated WBC, WBA Super, and The Ring Magazine World Champion Danny “Swift” Garcia took on Lucas “The Machine” Matthysee. The first two rounds seemed to be going in the way of Matthysee, but Garcia ended up coming back strongly. Matthysee’s eye became swollen, which gave Garcia a slight advantage. But Matthysee didn’t let his eye hinder his ability to put up a good fight. By the 12th round, both fighters took wild swings at each other – almost looking like feral animals with good fighting techniques. Garcia won by unanimous decision.
The Ishe Smith/Carlos Molina match ended up being mostly about defense. Even the announcers were uncertain as to how the match would be scored and who would come out as the winner. A few punches were thrown here and there, but the match was the least exciting of the four. Molina proved to be the better of the fighter and stripped Smith of the IBF Junior Middleweight Title. Not many audience members – at the MGM Grand or at Cinemark 14 – were really sure how that ended up being the result, especially since Smith seemed to be more aggressive and land more hits toward the end of the match.
The first match of the night between Ashley Theophane and Pablo Cesar Cano was another well-fought battle and a good way to kick off the night. Both fighters were pretty close on both offense and defense, but Cano got in several great hits – including a big one in the third round that got a good reaction from the audience at Cinemark 14. Cano won by split decision.
Special thanks to the folks at Fathom Events for providing press passes.