On the undercard of Saturday’s welterweight showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Victor Ortiz, a possible future Mexican legend will look to continue to build his legacy while a current one aims to keep cementing his.
The main bout before Mayweather and Ortiz lock horns will feature rising Mexican superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. The 21-year-old phenom will take on countrymate Alfonso Gomez from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, with HBO cutting away from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas to showcase one of boxing’s brightest young talents.
Alvarez brings an impressive record of 37-0-1, 27 KOs to the ring to defend his WBC Light Middleweight title. Gomez (23-4-2, 11KOs) is likely to be the next victim of Alvarez as Golden Boy Promotions would love to keep Canelo undefeated as long as possible as they try to build him as a global star. He’s already huge in his home country, and his crowd-pleasing style will likely endear him to American fans as well. Saturday is a great opportunity for him to continue to make himself a household name, and Gomez should give him that chance.
Future Hall-of-Famer Erik Morales, 35, will square off against 21-year-old untested Pablo Cesar Cano. Morales is a great fighter with a wonderful career, but this fight can’t help but put a bad taste in the mouths of boxing fans.
There’s nothing wrong with Morales fighting Cano, but the fact that the WBC sanctioned this fight for its Light Welterwight title is a sham. The belt belongs to Timothy Bradley who, going through a dispute with his promoters, hasn’t fought since late January. Yet the WBC stripped Bradley of the belt despite him being within his inactivity window, and put it up for grabs in Morales’ originally scheduled fight against Jorge Barrios. Then, Barrios pulled out of the fight and was replaced by the more respectable Lucas Matthysse. However, Matthysse injured himself in training and now the fight goes to Cano. Let’s just hope that the fight itself is entertaining, because the story behind it is riddled with confusion and corruption.
The broadcast will open with a bout between two up-and-comers at the junior welterweight level. Jessie Vargas (16-0 9 KOs) goes up against Joselito Lopez (23-9 17 KOs) in what could be a very exciting opening to the show.