There was no competition at all. Canelo Alvarez dominated Josesito Lopez. He couldn't be stopped, as Lopez woefully discovered on Saturday at the MGM Grand.
And now, Alvarez has proven that he's for real, and he's ready to fight accordingly. He's ready to face the best the boxing world has to offer.
Alvarez held on to his WBC 154-pound title by knocking down Lopez in Rounds 2 through 4 before sealing the win in the fifth round for his 37th straight victory.
There were few who were surprised to see him win, but to see him win so decisively and so dominantly was a statement, if not an unexpected one. Even Lopez himself seemed blown away by his opponent's fortitude, telling the Associated Press via ESPN.com after the match:
He proved that he's the better fighter. I felt good going in, but his size is pretty good. There was a big difference. He's a smart fighter. I was hoping to land some punches, but he was smarter, stronger and patient. I was looking for a good punch to change the momentum.
It may seem unusual to see such effusive praised heaped upon the victor in the immediate wake of a fight, but that was how dominant Alvarez was. That was the kind of recognition and respect he deserved.
And now, he deserves to put that 41-0-1 record on the line and start taking on some of boxing's best. He's already proven he can be dominant against the likes of Lopez; now, he must prove he can do the same thing against a Miguel Cotto, or possibly even a Floyd Mayweather.
If Alvarez hadn't proven it with his past dominance, he showed the world on Saturday that he has what it takes to give the fans a fight worth watching: He has the skill, the bravado and the confidence to believe he can take down anyone.
Exhibit A: Post-match, ESPN.com's Brett Okamoto asked him whether he was ready to take on an opponent like Mayweather.
Canelo's response? "I was born ready."
It's better than hearing Manny Pacquiao constantly come up with excuses about why a megafight against Mayweather will never happen. It's refreshing to hear someone who's ready and willing to put his stellar record on the line rather than defend it by default.
Alvarez isn't the only one who believes he has what it takes. Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Shaefer told Okamoto:
We would certainly be open to making a fight with Floyd and I think that's at the top of Canelo's wish list as well. Other names do include Miguel Cotto and … Sergio Martinez. What we really think, first and foremost, is that [Alvarez] is ready. You see the tremendous improvement. He really is ready and we're not afraid to put him in front of any of those names.
With the win over Lopez, Alvarez has officially arrived. Now, to celebrate, it's time to reward him an opponent who will actually offer up a challenge.
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