After a wild bout that went the full 12 rounds, Saul "Canelo" Alvarez (42-0-1) defeated Austin Trout (26-1) by unanimous decision (115-112, 116-111, 118-109) to unify the WBC and WBA light middleweight championships.
Alvarez proved to the world that he was the superior fighter Saturday night, earning this victory with a smart game plan and execution.
While the bout exposed a few glaring weaknesses for Canelo, the 22-year-old has plenty of time to learn from his mistakes and move forward.
As for Trout, the loss will be tough to swallow for now, but there is no reason to expect the former champion to stop training as hard as he did coming into this bout in preparation for the next chance to show his worth.
There are big things in store for both men after this marquee bout, and this is what boxing fans should expect from these fighters moving forward.
Saul "Canelo" Alvarez (42-0-1)
This was not the most decisive victory of Saul Alvarez’s career—most hoped that he would have knocked Trout out and staked his claim on the division with dominance—but the pace and game plan showed in this bout proved the young fighter is wise beyond his years.
Alvarez came into the fight with a completely different plan of attack than Trout expected. While the strategy limited how dangerous Canelo could be, the fact that Trout was unable to mount much of a counterattack showed just how much skill Alvarez possesses.
The natural question is who Alvarez should fight next, and there is only one man that fits that bill: Floyd Mayweather.
As long as Mayweather beats Robert Guerrero in May, the stage will be set for the two undefeated superstars to square off later in 2013 for an epic megafight. After beating Trout, Alvarez has earned the right to fight Money.
If Canelo uses the lessons he learned in Saturday’s fight to improve on his weaknesses, he would be a serious threat to Mayweather’s unbeaten streak.
Austin Trout (26-1)
There is no question that the loss hurts the aura that came with Austin Trout when he was undefeated, but at 27 years old and entering the prime of his career, this is the kind of learning experience that could help him evolve into a better fighter.
After winning the vacant WBA light middleweight championship in a battle with Saul’s brother, Rigoberto Alvarez, in February 2011, Trout successfully defended the strap four times before dropping it Saturday.
Those victories will not be forgotten, and Trout will be back in the hunt for a light middleweight title again sooner rather than later. A great way to get back on track and convince the public that he deserves another shot at glory would be to take on Miguel Cotto in a rematch.
Cotto lost the first bout and would be looking for vengeance, while Trout would have the chance to show the boxing world against a viable championship contender that he is a legitimate threat in the division despite the most recent loss.