Canelo Alvarez returns to the scene of the crime at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, March 8 to fight a very dangerous big punching Alfredo “El Perro” Angulo.
Alvarez was last seen tethered to a stake in the ring for the ever skulking capricious jackals of boxing when his “promoter” of record, Oscar de la Hoya, needed to hide away at a celebrity drug rehab clinic so as to be removed from the final manipulations of the catchweight Alvarez fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr. The overall performance was the usual canned rinse and repeat Mexican Holiday sleepwalk at the MGM Grand that Mayweather has reprised like an annual Punxsutawney Phil Groundhog Day appearance for the last 7 years now.
Alvarez was easily “guided” by referee Kenny Bayless after repeated warnings into boxing with the notoriously slow paced defensive Mayweather resulting in a nondramatic duck and peck majority decision. The resultant stinkbomb created by emasculated Mayweather fans when they couldn’t collect their canned rinse and repeat bets made on a Mayweather unanimous decision quickly engulfed the Nevada fat cat boxing establishment to choke them out. Fast forward and they say it’s a new dawn down at the Nevada State Athletic Commission with a new commish, director, and presumably other turnovers so as to no longer “rubber stamp” boxing matches that they have admitted to doing in the past.
“Their words,” not mine. No need for me to make this stuff up when boxing is a gold mine of the “stuff.”
Alvarez would seem to be thrown to the wolves again in this SHOWTIME PPV® promotion against the WBA 7th ranked Angulo who is otherwise unranked by Ring with only a 30th Boxrec ranking. With all respect to Angulo who is considerably more dangerous and capable than his slight 22-3 record shows on paper, this should not be a PPV promotion and likely does poor numbers unless Alvarez truly is a one off media phenom at age 23. I see a PPV baby unfavorably compared against the grizzled PPV kings Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao who have millions of PPVs sold over many years.
Nonetheless, the unwashed public can’t get too weepy over the cinnamon whiz kid who made a $12 million guarantee plus residuals in his last encounter that he took a lot of stick for. Angulo for his part is guaranteed to start like a bad joke delivered with a killer punchline when the bell rings. He’s also a fellow Mexican fighter like Alvarez, but that’s where the comparison ends. Angulo started his pro career with modest acclaim as an undefeated former Mexican Olympian and developing knockout artist, but The Fates did him no favors in his losses. He was deathly sick with the flu against Kermit Cintron in what was meant to be his breakout fight. He refused to call off the bout and took the expected loss when he had no zip in his feet or oomph to his punches. He rebuilt with 4 straight knockouts against solid contenders before being detained on the US border for most of a year in a ham handed Homeland Security snafu. After being released he was rushed into a fight against fellow slugger James Kirkland who himself had been released from the clink earlier in the year, but at least with the chance to whip himself back into shape with 5 quick fights before they met. The result was an epic encounter of concussive savagery that left both fighters terribly battered and the poorly trained Angulo beaten down when the smoke and debris finally cleared. In his last loss to Erislandy Lara, Angulo had put him down hard twice with a favorable end in sight before his left eye mysteriously blew up and he had to turn away in pain. The stoppage was an horrific result for a fighter who gives it his all in every fight like Angulo does.
Alvarez has always been able to make adjustments, even in the Mayweather fight that saw him taking some of the last rounds as he stalked Mayweather around the ring, but he has never faced this type of raw power, strength, and pressure as Angulo has. Angulo has always made a good fight, so maybe that’s what the PPV honchos were thinkin’ when they were sitting around drinkin’ up this PPV disaster, that at least the fight would be a great one even if the PPV numbers didn’t deliver.
Regardless, the supporting bouts are weak with no star power though they are credible matches of ranked contender/champ types. Noteworthy is Canelo’s 32 year old brother and fringe lightweight contender Ricardo Alvarez seems to be overmatched against a sharp looking undefeated knockout phenom out of Weslaco, Texas, Omar Figueroa. Not a fan of putting brothers on the same card in a critical match such as this since a brutal loss can negatively impact the brother who follows. Perhaps the saving grace is that Canelo has been in against stronger grown men all through his teenage years with a reported 100 unofficial Mexican fights added to his 44 official fights, so maybe his constitution is stronger than he is credited with.
As it turns, that bullet was dodged when Omar Figueroa suffered a wrist injury and scratched himself from the card. Maybe Ricardo Alvarez has a chance against the replacement if he fights at all since I don’t see him listed on the card any more.
Bottom line, this is a deadly serious gut check fight between Alfredo Angulo and Canelo Alvarez, a real shame that there will have to be a loser, but such is the life of fan friendly Mexican fighters from time to time, and now their time lies in wait…..waiting, waiting, always waiting for the inevitable.