Floyd “Money” Mayweather (44-0) earned a convincing unanimous decision victory over Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (31-2-1) on May 4 in Las Vegas, but it was Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-0-1) that emerged from the fight as the real winner.
Mayweather needs a new hero to become an adversary to the villain character he portrays—the constant trash talking and negative public perception from his recent arrest and jail time only adds to that perception—and Alvarez is the perfect candidate to play the good-guy role.
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With a clean-cut look, an intense work ethic and a brutal in-ring style, Canelo has already captured the hearts of the Mexican people and has proven to the boxing community that he is the real deal by beating then-undefeated Austin Trout.
Alvarez is becoming an international superstar like Manny Pacquiao, and just like Pac-Man, those that enjoy the good vs. bad dynamic in combat sports will look to make Canelo the protagonist to Money’s antagonist.
It’s a perfect fit.
Another underrated aspect of this fight would be the vast difference of age. The talk coming into Mayweather’s bout with Guerrero was how he would react to being 36 years old and missing a year of in-ring action, but Father Time obviously hasn’t caught him yet.
Meanwhile, Alvarez is only 22 years old and is the quintessential boxing prodigy. Mayweather should be trying to cement his legacy by fighting the best in the sport, and tangling with the best prospect in the division would continue to prove his dominance.
Canelo would also benefit from this fight, as he is looking to cement his own legacy and launch his career into mainstream stardom by becoming the first fighter in history to defeat the unbeaten Mayweather.
Both fighters are very similar in the ring. Predicated on defense first, each man uses his speed and counterpunching to make his opponent pay. Mayweather gets very aggressive at times during his fights, but he would meet his match with Alvarez.
Canelo's speed and underestimated power would frustrate Mayweather, but Money's defense would give Alvarez fits as well. These two fighters were built to square off against each other, and the resulting megafight would be a blockbuster.
Not only is this the biggest fight in the ring, but this is also the biggest draw on paper.
There is no questioning just how much of a draw Mayweather is—just look at the $32 million purse he earned on Saturday night (h/t Dan Rafael of ESPN)—but Alvarez is already becoming a serious draw on his own.
This is the kind of fight that the boxing community would love, but whether Mayweather wants to take the risk of fighting an adversary as worthy as Alvarez or not is the big question now.