Thursday, May 5, 2016

Canelo Alvarez Vs. Amir Khan: Fight Preview: Info & Stats

Preview by Stephen D. Donatelli

The biggest fight of the year could very well be this weekend and it should be a good one.


Is Oscar De La Hoya and his company, Golden Boy Promotions, pulling the wool over our faces this Saturday Night by simply steering his cash cow, Canelo, away from the undefeated, power-punching, middleweight champion, Gennady 'GGG' Golovkin? It appears time will have to answer that question because on May 7th at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, WBC & RING Magazine Lineal Middleweight Champion Saul "Canelo" Alvarez (46-1-1, 32 KOs) faces the gutsy, former world champion, Amir 'King' Khan (31-3, 19 Kos.) The biggest fight of the year could very well be this weekend and it should be a good one.

Canelo Alvarez is arguably the biggest name in boxing and he’s taking on Amir Khan, a 29-year-old British boxer who will be fighting as a middleweight (155 to be exactly, 160 is middleweight) for the first time in his career. To make matters even better: Both men need to win, and the outcome of this tussle will have major ramification for both!

Canelo Alvarez, with a dominant victory over the smaller 'King Khan', would prove to the boxing world that he's still a 25-year-old that is creatively stepping up.  Looking at the two fighter’s records, it is the younger Alvarez who has the stouter resume, when it comes to quality of opposition. While we can't simply forget that Amir Khan lost by stoppage twice (Danny Garcia & Breidis Prescott) 'King Khan' looked pretty sturdy in his last (3) Unanimous Decision victories over crafty, experienced boxers such as: Chris Algieri, Devon Alexander, and Luis Collazo! On the other hand, since his one-sided boxing lesson to former pound-4-pound Kingpin Floyd 'Money' Mayweather, Alvarez has had a steady diet of determined opponents that presented different styles. In order, Alvarez defeated, Alfredo Angulo, Erislandy Lara (close fight), decimated James Kirkland, and beat the legendary Miguel Cotto!


This match-up presents so many intangibles. Let me start by stating, after breaking down everything from watching film of their fights, to the body language at press conferences, Amir Khan has the skill-set to frustrate Canelo. He has the style to make him look bad early, in the same way Erislandy Lara’s elusive style did when he lost a debatable split decision to the Mexican in 2014. But, Khan’s instincts seemingly betray him in the late rounds. Canelo’s size, strength and aggressiveness will take an inevitable and punishing toll, leaving Khan depleted, and unable to sustain Alvarez late. I will say this, against Miguel Cotto, Alvarez didn't rely on his feet at all. As I observed, the guy looked like he was in cement shoes for the majority of the fight against Cotto.

Big “if.” 

This could be competitive in spots, but Khan has been largely inactive, and well protected since moving to welterweight. His best wins (Algieri and Alexander) have been against guys who can’t really punch. However, If the Khan’s chin holds and he can use the Virgil Hunter’s nullifying tactics for every minute, of every round, then we could see an upset special. Big “if.” My guess is that maybe in the early rounds, Amir can stick & move and snag two of the first 3 rounds to get the fans starting to think upset, but once Alvarez begins to find his range with his heavy-handed power punches, and starts landing flush, then what happens?  In the end though, based on size and skills, I see Canelo Alvarez stopping, a better than expected, Amir Khan, in the later rounds (8-10), respectively!

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