Saul “Canelo” Alvarez could’ve picked any opponent and still earn a fat pay check. Instead, he picked an opponent that nobody wants to fight.
Erislandy Lara has been calling out Canelo for quite some time now. Alvarez has repeatedly ignored Lara until Lara interrupted Canelo during the latter’s post fight press conference after his win over Alfredo Angulo last March. Although Canelo told Lara to “wait” during that that press conference, the wait wasn’t that long. That incident was “the last straw that broke the camel’s back.”
Alvarez said that Lara talked too much and that he disrespected him and the Mexican people. He added that Lara was not yet a known boxer a year ago so the fight didn’t mean much, but because Lara has hyped things up by calling him out, it was time to “give the fans the fight that they wanted.”
Ticket to Money
Lara believes that he has “forced his way to this fight” by doing things he’s never done before. Lara claims that he is a “laid back guy” but says that he “went to the extreme measures” just to get this fight to prove that he is the best 154 –pound fighter in the world today.
Lara also thinks that Alvarez is having problems with making the weight limit and that’s the reason why his WBA title is not on the line and that they are fighting at a catch weight of 155 pounds. Lara may have a point, as boxing24 news reported last July 2 that Canelo is still way over the fight’s weight limit with less than two weeks before the fight. But that is the least of Lara’s worries.
Lara believes that this is his time and his fight. He plans on dominating Canelo on July 12 whichever way the fight goes. Lara says the fight will depend on how he chooses it to be. He may choose to box or stand toe to toe like he did with Angulo. But he says that in the end, what is important is that he will win the fight convincingly and land a rich fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Clear and Present Danger
Showtime Executive Vice-President and General Manager Stephen Espinoza says that Lara is one “opponent that nobody wants to fight”. Espinoza believes that Lara is one of the most skilled and talented boxers in the world today.
On the other hand, Golden Boy President Oscar De La Hoya praised Alvarez for choosing Lara. He said that the fact that Canelo wanted this fight just shows that he wants to be “great” and that he wants “to fight the best in order to be great.” De La Hoya adds that Lara is a “real” opponent and that he is dangerous.
Stylistically, Del La Hoya is correct. Lara is a real threat to Alvarez.
Styles Make Fights
GBP is building up Alvarez to be a PPV superstar. In fact, Alvarez is now one of the sport’s main attractions along with Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. He draws a lot of support from the Mexican and Latino community. But while Canelo may be one of the best and most exciting fighters out there today, styles do make fights.
Most fight experts believe that Lara’s slick boxing style could spell trouble for Alvarez, much like Floyd’s style did. Canelo Alvarez looked lost and was schooled by Mayweather for twelve full rounds last May 2013. Mayweather won the bout by a wide unanimous decision and dealt Canelo the first loss of his career. Though Lara is no Mayweather, the Cuban ring technician is just as quick, smart and tactical as Money.
Canelo Alvarez has a lot of courage because he took Lara’s bait, but he might have just picked his poison.