It’s do or die for El Canelo against Money

2013-09-08 14:00

Floyd “Money” Mayweather has a very bold trademark catch phrase: “I am boxing.”

Having dominated the sport for 17 years and defeated all 44 foes who have tried their luck against him, it is almost predictable that Saúl “El Canelo (The Redhead)” Álvarez could be his next victim.

Mexican Álvarez, on the other hand, believes the time has come for a new superstar to take over.

The World Boxing Council light middleweight title and the World Boxing Association super world light middleweight title contest is already being punted by bookies as the fight of the year.

Álvarez’s title belts will be at stake.

The 12-rounder takes place on Sunday morning (SA time) at the famous MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas.

What makes this scrap even more attractive and difficult to call is the fact that both fighters are well-grounded in the sport and come from boxing families.

Mayweather and Álvarez also represent two of boxing’s best nations – the US and Mexico, respectively.

A win by Álvarez will shift the balance of power from the US to Mexico, while Mayweather’s triumph will serve to reaffirm the dominance of the world’s economic powerhouse.

El Canelo, only seven years into the paid rank, possesses a serious threat to the pay-per-view king’s supremacy of almost two decades.

Mayweather has not faced an undefeated foe since tarnishing Ricky Hatton’s clean record in 2007.

The 36-year-old Mayweather triumphed via a 10th round TKO against a red-faced Hatton, who at the time was touted as the real deal welterweight king.

In April, Álvarez’s powerful right hand knocked down then undefeated Austin Trout for the first time in the latter’s 27 fights.

The unanimous decision win by Álvarez was Trout’s maiden loss since turning pro in 2005.

It’s questionable whether that same right hand will be powerful enough against Mayweather.

Many foes found it almost impossible to hit Mayweather in the head, thanks to his effective shoulder roll defensive tactic.

The Mexican, who has displayed exceptional physical strength and ability to disorganise his opponents in his two previous fights, stands a good chance to unlock Mayweather’s defence.

Mayweather can ill afford to lose as this is his second of a six-bout deal – estimated to be worth about $200?million (R2?billion) – with Showtime television network.

Should he win, El Canelo (23) will etch his name into boxing’s history books as one of the greatest of all time.

Tale of the tape: Mayweather vs Alvarez

»?The fight will be broadcast live on Sunday morning on SS6 and SS6HD

What Mayweather must do to defeat Álvarez

»?Jab, and avoid allowing him to get too close

»?Let him do the chasing until he runs out of stamina and then take control of the fight

»?Use hand speed, footwork and tantalising movement to good effect to frustrate him

»?Use shoulder-rolling as his defensive core as it works well against power-punchers and avoids being knocked out

»?Rely on experience

What Álvarez must do to defeat Mayweather

»?Be in Mayweather’s face constantly as he has a physical strength and power advantage

»?Avoid giving him space

»?Use his left hooks effectively and work the body

»?Dismantle his defensive tactics through power shots

»?Avoid throwing too many wasted punches and instead use a counterpunch strategy

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