By Geno McGahee
This Saturday, one of the biggest names in boxing returns to the ring against his toughest opponent to date. Canelo Alvarez, 41-0-1, 30 KO’s, puts his WBC light middleweight title up for grabs as he takes on the WBA light middleweight champion, Austin Trout, 26-0, 14 KO’s, in a title eliminator. The stakes are high and the match up is a great one in every way.
Alvarez is only 22-years-old, but he already sits on top of the sport, making the top 5 of most “pound for pound best” listings. He reminds many of Julio Cesar Chavez because of his amazing body attack and aggression. He has beaten a list of respectable opposition including Shane Mosley, Kermit Cintron, Alfonso Gomez, Carlos Baldomir and Josesito Lopez. He is a gutsy puncher with power in both hands and is on a fast track to the biggest payday in boxing, a showdown with Floyd Mayweather, JR.
Across the ring is Austin Trout, a fighter that fought hard for respect and finally got it when he dominated Miguel Cotto over twelve rounds. It was his introduction to most boxing fans. Cotto had such a huge following and did so well in his encounter with Mayweather, that most were looking for Trout to be laid out, leading to a Cotto/Alvarez match up. It didn’t happen. Trout used his jab and skills, mixed with plenty of heart to maintain control of the fight and take the victory. If you are preparing for Alvarez, Cotto is a good opponent. He shares many of Canelo’s strengths with the exception of youth. Cotto was well past his prime.
The big question going into this is how Trout will take the punches from Alvarez. If he can take a shot with the power that Canelo has, then we will be in for an interesting night. He must also avoid the body attack that has left so many other opponents on the floor. Trout has plenty of skills and a good feel for the game, but he must keep the elbows in and use some mobility to confuse and control the rushing Mexican warrior.
Alvarez wanted this fight, mainly because he is cut out of the old cloth, where the best wants to fight the best. They tried to offer him Cotto, despite the defeat to Trout, but Canelo declined. He wants to beat the best and he’s facing one of them now. He must work the body and overcome the jab of Trout that will be put into his face with some regularity. If he works the body consistently, Trout will fold. If he doesn’t, we may see a major upset.
Alvarez-Trout is going to be a free show on Showtime this Saturday night. So, after you’re done watching Tyson Fury and Steve Cunningham duke it out on NBC, you can check this out. This is a good boxing weekend for the fans! As for a prediction… Canelo TKO in 8 rounds. That body attack is a deadly thing and will make the difference.