Tonight’s fight between Canelo Alvarez and Erislandy Lara wasn’t without it’s controversy but in the end Golden Boy’s prized boxer left victorious.
Lara entered the fight with a clear cut plan, move around the ring and don’t let Canelo hit you. That planned worked for the first few rounds when Lara effectively used his jab to keep Canelo at a distance and used his quickness to dodge his haymakers. It seemed he had the blueprint to frustrate Canelo and pick up the easy, yet boring, victory. instead Lara began to slow around round 6 and stopped being active with his hands; Canelo capitalized.
Canelo chased Lara around for the first half of the fight swinging wildly but eventually he committed to throing body punches and that slowed the extremely active Lara. Canelo used those body blows to open up combinations to the head and stole a few of the middle rounds according to some judges. hsi pressure made Lara look lazy and disinterested for the entire middle of the fight. He kept up that pressure heading into the later rounds. Many fight experts and analyst had the fight tied at 5 rounds a piece after 10 rounds.
In the 11th both fighters picked up their game. Lara danced but threw more combinations and jabs. Canelo went back to the body and finally landed a few jabs when Lara was stuck on the ropes. That round was an honest toss up. The last round was more Canelo aggression than anything. Lara played keep away and clearly thought he won the fight as he threw his hands up in the air with a few seconds left in the fight. The judges saw it differently.
The crowd went silent as it was announced that the fight was scored a split decision. The first card was scored 115-113 in favor of Lara, while the second was scored the same in favor of Canelo. It all came down to the final card.
“117-111 in favor of the winner Canelo Alvarez!” The crowd exploded. Everyone watching was perplexed at the wide margin.
The fight seemed to sway back and forth and even though Canelo was the aggressor he didn’t dominate a round of the fight. Even the rounds he won were debatable. In the coming days there may be a cloud hanging over Golden Boy as people re-watch the fight and can critique the final judge.
It’s no secret that Canelo is Golden Boy’s most prestigious fighter and their cash cow. He’s proven that he can carry a PPV card and tonight’s 14,000 plus sold out crowd is just further proof of that. a fight between him and Puerto Rican fighter Miguel Cotto hung in the balance and a loss would’ve been devastating. They now don’t have to worry about that and Canelo doesn’t have to worry about Lara. he can move on to the biggest fight of his young career; yes even bigger than Mayweather because he’ll be the main attraction and headliner.
Canelo now holds the golden Boy flag on his shoulders and he’ll have to beat fighters better than Erislandy Lara to keep it that way.