COMMENTARY | Wednesday it was announced that Saul "Canelo" Alvarez would no longer be part of the May 4 undercard of the Floyd Mayweather-Robert Guerrero pay-per-view event in Las Vegas and, instead, opt to headline his own Showtime card against Austin Trout on April 20 at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas.
According to reports, the 22-year-old WBC junior middleweight champion from Guadalajara, Mexico, wanted a written guarantee that he'd be facing Mayweather on September 14-- provided Mayweather beats Guerrero, of course.
Mayweather had reportedly agreed verbally to the arrangement, but was unwilling to put anything down in writing. Alvarez and his people had gone as far as they were going to go without a written guarantee and finally decided to take their services elsewhere.
The feeling is that Alvarez, who sold out the MGM Grand in Las Vegas last September and helped Showtime set a TV ratings record, is now a solid main stage star. His willingness to play chief support to Mayweather during Cinco de Mayo weekend was based solely on the idea that he would be helping promote a showdown with Mayweather on September 14.
So, with no binding deal in place for a September PPV clash, Alvarez took himself off the May 4 bill to leave Mayweather and Company looking for a new co-feature.
Alvarez, despite hearing harsh criticism in recent months for an increasingly poor level of opposition, is extremely popular in the Mexican and Mexican-American community. The loss of Canelo to Mayweather-Guerrero will probably mean a slightly weaker and certainly less vocal live crowd. It could also erase a good number of buys from fans eager to see Alvarez against WBA junior middleweight titlist, Austin Trout, in what many feel is Alvarez's toughest challenge to date.
The lack of a major Mexican presence on a Cinco de Mayo card will be felt, although it probably won't be too much of a sales killer if the Mayweather hype machine and Golden Boy can sell Robert Guerrero as a viable and dangerous opponent.
Long-term, nothing really changes for Mayweather, though. When/if he beats Guerrero, he could very well give Canelo a call, agree to go along with the big ticket bout on September 14, and all will be forgiven.
Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer´s statement about Mayweather opting to keep all of his focus on Guerrero rather than even consider any side deals or future bouts seems reasonable. Mayweather, at this stage of his career, has earned the right to call the shots and make all pretenders to the throne wait their turn, under his terms. The five-division world champ must've bristled at the idea of the 22-year-old upstart, who has yet to even headline his own PPV, attempting to back him into a corner when it comes to this contract signing.
Again, though, all will surely be forgiven when/if Mayweather-Canelo is revisited after May 4.
For Alvarez, the lack of a presence on the Mayweather card will likely mean fewer eyeballs watching him in his biggest, most dangerous bout to date. The Mexicans and Mexican-Americans will surely be in his corner, no matter what, but Canelo is missing out on a chance to reach a more mainstream audience as part of a million-selling Mayweather event.
Competitively, Alvarez will have his hands full with Trout and could very well be headed toward an upset loss. A win, however, takes him back to Mayweather, despite this little dust-up. Mayweather-Alvarez makes sense for both parties and would leave too much money on the table to be ignored. Other than a highly-unlikely, pretty much impossible Pacquiao dream fight, Mayweather's biggest money bout would likely be against the popular, red-headed 154 lb. champ.
Say what you will about both fighters, but Mayweather and Alvarez are smart business men. Expect Mayweather-Alvarez on September 14.
Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and as Editor-in-Chief of The Boxing Tribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing. For breaking news, additional analysis, and assorted crazy commentary, follow him on Facebook, @TheBoxingTribune or on Twitter, @BoxingBTBC.
Source:Kevin Iole, Canelo Alvarez opts to pass on Floyd Mayweather PPV card, to face 'No Doubt' Trout on Showtime, Yahoo! Sports
- Sports & Recreation
- Robert Guerrero
- Austin Trout