Canelo vs. Saunders: Undercard Results
- MAIN EVENT: Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez beat Billy Joe Saunders – TKO9
- Elwin Soto beat Katsunari Takayama – TKO9
- Souleymane Cissokho beat Kieron Conway – SD
- Frank Sanchez beat Nagy Aguilera – TKO6
- Marc Castro beat Irving Macias Castillo – TKO4
- Keyshawn Davis beat Jose Antonio Meza – UD
- Christian Alan Gomez Duran beat Xavier Wilson – TKO2
- Kelvin Davis beat Jan Marsalek – UD
AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, played host to the return of boxing normalcy on Saturday, May 8, 2021, as over 73,000 fans filled the home of the Dallas Cowboys.
Pound-for-pound favorite Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (56-1-2, 38 KOs) looked to add to his belt collection on his quest to unifying the Super Middleweight division, a feat yet to be done in boxing. His opponent and the WBO champion, Billy Joe Saunders (30-1, 14 KOs), hoped to spoil those plans.
Saunders made his way to the ring calm and relaxed despite the sea of Canelo fans booing his every step. Alvarez savored the moment under the big lights and played to his crowd as he made the long walk into the ring.
Alvarez was the aggressor early on and began to stalk Saunders from the opening bell. Saunders appeared tentative and waited on Alvarez to make a move. Alvarez made an early investment to the body of Saunders, while Saunders peppered Canelo with his jab, looking to keep the Mexican at a distance.
Alvarez would continue to commit to body shots, while mixing in stiff one-two combinations to the head. The difference in power was evident with the sounds the Canelo’s shots echoing ringside. Saunders nodded and smiled after any good exchange from Alvarez, but at this point, he had still not tried much outside of jabs and feints that never led to any big shots through four rounds.
By the midway point of the bout, Saunders had begun to find his stride more and landed some clean shots on Canelo while still staying slick and slightly frustrating the stronger man.
Saunders grew confident in his head movement and even stayed in the pocket, making the Mexican miss.
By the end of the seventh round, it appeared that Saunders had begun to close to gap on Canelo, but Canelo followed up in Round 8 with a huge onslaught. The Mexican started to land heavy shots that rocked Saunders into the ropes. Alvarez waved his hands in the air, playing to his crowd once again, and seemingly 70,000 people cheered as their man began to take charge.
Canelo would land flush on Saunders’ right eye and almost immediately caused the eye to swell shut. In between rounds, the Saunders corner called a halt to the action, thereby crowning Canelo Alvarez the winner and now the WBO, WBA, WBC and Ring Magazine Super Middleweight champion.
“I knew I broke him,” said Alvarez shortly after the win. “I went to my corner and told Eddy; he’s not coming out. I broke his bone.”
Alvarez expressed he had little-to-no worries of Saunders’ game plan and never thought his rival was in the fight. “I was winning round by round. I knew the fight would come to me after the sixth.”
With three of the four Super Middleweight titles held by the Mexican superstar, the only one that’s left is held by IBF champion Caleb Plant. Eddie Hearn, who currently helps promote Alvarez, says that is the next big fight to make.
“It’s the only fight. Its the only fight that makes sense right now,” said Hearn. “What else is Caleb Plant going to do? Look at this, this is an event.”
Without question, Canelo Alvarez has elevated himself to a status few ever see. Undoubtedly, Alvarez remains the face of boxing and, in most eyes, the pound for pound best.
Caleb Plant is by no means an easy task, but at this point, it’s tough to favor anyone at 168 over Alvarez.