Saul Alvarez vs. Alfredo Angulo: What's Next for Canelo After Decisive Win

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 9, 2014

Mar 8, 2014; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Saul Alvarez prior to his super welterweight main event bout against Alfredo Angulo at MGM Grand Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports
Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sp

Referee Tony Weeks may have surprised many by calling the fight in the 10th round, but nobody can argue that Saul Alvarez wasn't already headed for a defeat of Alfredo Angulo. Now the question is, what's next for Canelo?

Following his defeat to Floyd Mayweather, Alvarez needed a decisive victory on Saturday night, and that's exactly what he got. By the end of the fight, Angulo had been battered. Both of his eyes were swollen, and his defense was becoming more and more nonexistent in the later rounds.

Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole felt that Weeks' decision to end the bout merely hastened the inevitable:

Boxing writer Bryan Armen Graham called it a "nontroversy":

As you'd expect, Canelo was more than happy with the result, per's Dan Rafael.

"Tonight I was the best fighter," said Alvarez. "I definitely rebounded from the Mayweather fight with a strong performance. I'm very happy. I came here and did my job."

According to Rafael, Canelo was up 89-82 on two scorecards and 88-83 on the other before the stoppage.

Having picked up the rebound win, Alvarez can set his sights on greener and much more lucrative pastures.

A rematch with Mayweather is seemingly out of the picture. People might pay to see it, but there's no reason for Mayweather to take it, considering the one-sided nature of his victory. Maybe Canelo can get that once he's proven himself again.

Sep 14, 2013; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Floyd Mayweather Jr. (blue gloves) and Canelo Alvarez battle it during their during their WBC and WBA super welterweight titles fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Spor

You don't want to get too ahead of yourself. It's important to temper the excitement after this match. Angulo isn't the best of competition. Fight Network's Corey Erdman compared him to Double-A pitching:

With Mayweather out of the picture, who does that leave?

Many see Miguel Cotto as the perfect opponent for Alvarez. Although he's 10 years Canelo's senior, Cotto is still boxing at a very high level. And with the boxers' combined popularity, the fight wouldn't have any trouble drawing interest and would bring in huge pay-per-view buys.

These are two guys fans want to see fight each other.

Apparently, the fighters want it to happen, too.

Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer intimated that the 23-year-old would like to fight the winner of Cotto's bout with Sergio Martinez:

This idea has been broached before, as Schaefer revealed in November 2013 that he offered Cotto over $10 million to be Alvarez's opponent on March 8. It's an offer that would be hard to turn down a second time.

ORLANDO, FL - OCTOBER 05:  Miguel Cotto reacts to winning a Super Welterweight bout against Delvin Rodriguez at Amway Center on October 5, 2013 in Orlando, Florida.  (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

From Canelo's perspective, there's too much on the line not to pursue this fight. There are plenty of critics out there who wonder whether Alvarez has been built up with wins over inferior opponents and then was found out against Floyd.

Beating Cotto would mean silencing a lot of those detractors and possibly setting up a rematch with Mayweather down the road. At least that's what ESPN's Stephen A. Smith has in mind:

Of course, if Martinez were to win, then Canelo may be singing another tune, as that bout wouldn't be anywhere near as profitable as fighting Cotto.

In the event that Cotto isn't Canelo's next opponent, perhaps he could face the winner of the Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley fight, especially if Pac-Man wins. A lot of people would pay to see Pacquiao and Alvarez step into the ring together.

Another option is Erislandy Lara.

Back in February, Lara questioned why Angulo would get a fight against Alvarez. Now, he's using more blatant tactics, mainly storming Canelo's post-match press conference on Saturday night, per Marcos Villegas of Fight Hub TV:'s Brian Campbell applauded Lara's "full frontal assault":

Plenty of promoters try to create drama in order to hype a fight, and then everybody sees right through it. In this case, however, it seems pretty clear that Lara has a problem with Alvarez, and no unnecessary drama is needed.

Whatever decision Alvarez makes, you can bet that he'll do so with both his professional and financial futures in mind. There's no shortage of worthy opponents, so nobody should be worried that his next fight will be as one-sided as his win over Angulo.