Canelo: I had to be patient, in the end I connected

By Miguel Maravilla

Mexican superstar and newly crowned WBO light heavyweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs) scored a crushing knockout in the eleventh round dethroning Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (34-4-1, 29 KOs) of Russia, Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Following his victory, Alvarez addressed the media at the postfight press conference.
Canelo Postfight
“Thank everybody. I’m happy with the victory. We knew it was going to be a tough fight and we came out with the victory,” Canelo said.

Promoter Oscar de la Hoya added, “We couldn’t be any happier with Canelo’s performance. We knew it was going to be a difficult fight.”

With the fight close heading into the championship rounds, Canelo laid out Kovalev with a crushing left hook staggering him and following up with a right to finish him.

“I felt the punches but I was able to adapt. I was swinging wildly but in the end, I connected. I had to patient and Eddy had me close it out in the eleventh,” Canelo said on the knockout. “I hit him upstairs and that’s what finished it. It was hard to get to his body. Everything we worked on we did in this fight but it was difficult to get inside.”

Alvarez joins fellow Mexicans Juan Manuel Marquez, Erik Morales, and Jorge Arce in winning four world titles in four weight classes.

“The objective was to become a four-division world champion. I’m not concerned with being the best pound for pound but I just want to keep winning and make history,” Canelo stated. “I want to keep making history. I don’t know what crazy idea Eddy (Reynoso) has but we are ready for anything,” Canelo added.

“Canelo wants to be great. He wants to leave a legacy,” De la Hoya said.

Up next for Canelo?

“It will be difficult to go down to 160 but I have to defend that title also,” said Alvarez.

Kovalev Not Present

Sergey Kovalev was not present as he was sent to the hospital for precautionary measures. Main Events CEO Kathy Duva spoke briefly.

“Sergey wanted me to say ‘sorry.’ He fought a legendary fighter in Canelo. He was fighting a good fight. Sergey plans to be back.”

Follow Miguel on Twitter @MigMaravilla

Canelo-Kovalev Scorecard
Kovalev: I didn't recover from my last fight

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  • Kov, you had a great game plan. Credit to u and Buddy M. For executing it as best u cld. U were amost there buddy. Almost.. canelo did amazing. Regardless of what any haters say, their suspicions or “Professional Opinions”makes no difference because that is all they are… opinions.

      • You are right Jake and besides it was a lousy fight.Looking at CA after the fight he looked like the loser and reacted kind of nonchalant .As evidenced by the score cards it was another fix for CA.There is no way in spite SK s performance CA should have been ahead.Buddy M should have had that in mind and have gone for the knockout.Everyone else knew it. The more I think about this fight the stranger it seems. The referee rushed to stop it without even seeing if SK would or could get up.It was the least he could have done for the Champion. Canelo didn’t look very good either.SK is washed up and cant go twelve rounds anymore maybe not even 10.He also cant take punishment either to the body or head.Sad.

    • So-called CRUSHER was weaker than a man moving up from 160. Sorry to say but ‘crusher’ is done and should retire before he gets hurt.

    • Well said Tony. No room in here to say anything bad about their performance. If Kovalev had fought Canelo when he called him, before the Yarde fight, I think the outcome could have been different. After all, my respects to Kovalev for his great effort.

  • Canelo hit him towards the back of the jaw with the left hook/uppercut, which took all the balance out of Kovalev and he moved into the direction of the finishing right hand. Here’s a crazy idea, Canelo defends the WBO 175 lbs title against Billy Joe Saunders in England. Another crazy idea, dare Andrade to fight Canelo for the WBO 175 lbs title in Mexico. Canelo should just stick with WBO defenses and WBO champions. I think he will run into trouble trying to unify at 168 and 175. Mairis Briedis w/ the WBO belt at Cruiser would be a risky fight for Canelo.

  • Some may refer to me as a Canelo hater, I’m not a fan. I do believe the man is an excellent boxer, one of the best. I also believe that he is more of a business man than a Pugilist, which is beneficial to him and his family, but not so much for the fight fan. I have never in my life observed a fighter who covered all the possible angles better than Canelo prior to stepping in the ring with their opponents. Those angles being catch weights, < prime, pre/post weight stipulations, exposed fighters, peds, waiting for father time and an opponent who fought 6 weeks ago. I do not feel as some that he personally would condone the shady/payola judges theory. In the end it is Canelo who is stepping in the ring risking his life each fight, how ever many I's he dots and T's he crosses, it is still him and his skills against his opponent. The same opponents that agreed to said stipulations and $$$$$$ prior to preparing and finally entering the ring. Its not what every fight fan wants, but it is business brilliance at its finest.

    • Ingress Killer: that is a VERY fair assessment. I actually agree with everything you have said. Although there would be some guys like Charlo and Andrade that i would love him to sweep the floor with, we may never get to see those. That is the politics of boxing. These guys are looking out for their health and fortune these days which hurts the boxing fan and causes major controversy. But in the end, the fighter can live a somewhat normal life after its all said and done and not end up a vegetable or mentally unstable like some have in the past

      • Leonard and Mayweather were the best at manipulating things to their advantage. I didn’t think Canelo did much the first 8 rounds an until the knockout it was a boring fight.

    • Weight stipulations lol Kovalev came in at 175. Canelo stated in an interview that there was no rehydration clause. Daniel Jacob’s came in at 160 but he paid the fine and he gained all the weight he wanted fight night and it didnt matter. Sugar Shane Mosely tested positive for Peds yet nobody talks about that, Holyfield as well was suspect. Non american boxers never get the respect they deserve.

    • I don’t really like CANELO but have to admit that he can fight. This just shows how great MAYWEATHER was.

    • Ingress, Canelo is just an example of how in this modern times a boxer should play his role as the main attraction in these business. Mayweather, IMO one the smartest boxers that I’ve ever seen, is the one that started all this. He always tried to put himself out of major risks in the selection of his opponents, and even paid big amounts of money in order to secure or at least have an edge in some fights. Went overweight against JMM and paid, instead of draining himself, paid an undisclosed amount of money to Maidana to make him wear the gloves of his selection and so on.
      At he end, where he s now? Undoubtedly, everything paid off.
      Ingress, you forgot to mention that Canelo has great inversions and endorsements, also he co promote most of his fights.
      BTW, you don’t look like a hater by no means

      • Mikemiguel: AGREED…
        fighters are evolving, and not just in the ring, but on the business side as well. Becoming their own promoter and doing catchweights to insure they are not permanently hurt insures they are still functionall and well off once they decide to retire. I applaud that. Way to many fighters HAVE to fight well past their end days due to money issues or cant function mentally cuz they got hurt. Health first!! we boxing fans can adapt

  • Only canelo fans can believe that was a real fight kovalev never used his size advantage he fought like he was afraid, do you mean to tell me that canelo is that much better than andre ward also why couldnt canelo knock out ggg but he nocked out a much bigger man why was canelo cautious against ggg a man his size but he wasnt afraid of a much bigger man this fight was fixed

    • Why don’t you watch the fight again and see what happened every time Kovalev tried to use power punches.

  • Looks like Canelo took a lesson from Mayweather and is now fighting guys past their prime. It’s all good though. He will relinquish that title. and move back down. He won’t fight again at light heavy until there is a safe fight up there

  • Saul Alvarez is a fabulous fighter, but I am afraid that I agree with a lot of commentators who have observed that he only fights the really strong fighters at the end of their careers, when they are literally worn-out.

    When Alvarez fought Daniel Jacobs, he came very close to losing, as Daniels was still fighting well and wasn’t yet a has-been. Alvarez fought Golovkin when his opponent was 36 years old, but he wouldn’t go near Golovkin when GGG was at his peak.

    Alvarez fought Rocky Fielding and even though it was a colossal mismatch, Fielding still took Alvarez into the 7th round. But when Alvarez fought Floyd Mayweather, he was taken to school completely and lost.

    I would like to see Alvarez fight opponents who are at the peak of their game, not fight has-beens like Kovalev. If Alvarez wants to play in the light heavyweight sandbox, let’s see him take on Artur Beterbiev. I would hazard a guess that Beterbiev would annihilate Alvarez completely.

    Yes, Saul Alvarez is a very accomplished boxer, but I fear that he is doing the Anthony Mundine trick – having fights with boxers who are either well past their prime or just a complete mismatch – and that does not look good at all.


    • That’s funny. He’s a Great boxer. That was a real fight. I saw it. Kovalev started winning rounds late. If it was fake that wouldn’t if happened.

  • canelo should be in the Guiness book of world records for being the smallest light heavyweight champion of the world

  • There was a rehydration clause just like with Jacobs and he didn’t gain all his weight back just a few pounds over but at 250k a pound why would he? He was losing that fight by Atlanta 4 rounds so yeah if it was a decision he would have won is crazy. There’s always gotta be some sort of rule or stipulation with him and his promoter where he has the edge. Yeah SK is a shot fighter but then why have the rehydration clause to further your cheating ways? Not impressed in any way.

  • Usyk can go back in the Cruiserweight and fight Canelo in this division. After Canelo wins against Usyk, Canelo will go up in the heavyweight and unify all the titles.

  • Watching this fight, definitely give props to Canelo, but looking at Kovalev s body over the last several fights it has changed drastically, muscle is not there like it was and punching power is mediocre now

  • There’s plenty of middle or even supermiddles that the red head won’t even mention, Charlo or benavides. Even Errol Spence could make it to middle weight. He would rather fight a shot SK with a hydration clause and I thought he was losing the fight so take that shit home and face one of the real hogs in either division. It’s bad for the sport and people will see sooner or later you a fraud and you know it. Don’t make Mexican fighters look bad man tf up.

    • Exactly my thoughts sir. The other thing I wanted to say was would Canelo have looked to go to 175 had a certain Andre Ward still been champion? What would have been his other options – Bivol, Bertebiev or even Adonis Stevenson just before his issues (thank God for his improving health). I just cant bring myself to buy into this thing about his greatness…sorry no matter how good a fighter he actually is or how much GBP is trying to sell him to all of us. Lastly I have to say I think De La Hoya is a shame. Used to like the dude as a fighter and he said so many good words when he became a promoter. To me he makes Don King & Bob Arum look like saints…

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