SAN DIEGO, May 16, 2014 – Juan Manuel Marquez landed a single shocking knockout punch against Manny Pacquiao in December 2012, making it the 2012 Fight of the Year.
Four months later in March 2013, Mike Alvarado stood toe to toe with Brandon Rios at the Stub Hub Center in Carson for 12 of the most punishing rounds of boxing you will ever see, making it our 2013 Fight of the Year.
Since then, both boxers have come off losses. In October, Marquez lost a definitive decision to Timothy Bradley Jr.; Mike Alvarado took a pounding from Ruslan Provodnikov, ending in a tenth round TKO.
Now the two will face each other with plenty on the line and plenty to fight for in a main event on HBO Boxing Saturday, May 17, at 10 p.m. ET. The fight brings boxing back to the Forum in Los Angeles for the first time in 13 years, a welcome development in the sport.
Marquez (55-7-1, 40 KOs) has his place in the Boxing Hall of Fame assured as one of Mexico’s greatest fighters. At age 40 with championship titles in four weight divisions, he has nothing left to prove to anyone but himself. He would like to become the first Mexican boxer to win titles in five weight classes.
Alvarado (31-2, 23 KOs), age 33, needs a victory to stay in boxing’s top tier and keep quality opponents coming his way. He is moving up from junior welterweight to take this fight. At Friday’s weigh-in, Alvarado was actually two-tenths of a pound over the weight limit at 143.2 pounds. The Marquez camp had the right to insist he work it off and weigh in again, but instead let it go. Marquez came to the scales looking much leaner and less muscular than he has in the last year, weighing in at 141.6 pounds.
Nothing terribly different is expected from either Marquez or Alvarado on Saturday. Marquez is the classic Mexican counterpuncher, looking for opportunities to catch an opponent unaware and unguarded during offensive efforts. Alvarado boxes more than the pure “brawl to the wall” type fighter, but he’ll be the one to bring the action, and Marquez will try and finish Alvarado’s sentences for him.
This will be a quality fight by two experienced men who like to put on a good show. Neither one ever dials it in. They both have the added incentive of a significant opportunity. The winner is likely to face Manny Pacquiao. If it’s Marquez, it will be the fifth fight in the pair’s long running series; if Marquez loses, most people expect him to retire.
On the undercard co-feature, two boxers will try to impress American fans who are likely seeing both for the first time, Viktor Postol (25-0-0, 10 KOs) of the Ukraine and Selcuk Aydin of Turkey (26-2-0, 19 KOs). Their bout is a 12-round The fight is a WBC junior welterweight title eliminator.
Postol is a careful boxer who likes to keep busy while setting up his one strong weapon, a vicious right hand. This is only his second fight in the U.S. Aydin has the firepower to end the fight quickly. He has fought more name brand opponents. His losses were to Robert Guerrero and Jesus Soto Karass, both by decision. Look for Aydin to present a tough challenge to the technician Postol.
Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Mike Alvarado airs on HBO Saturday, May 17, at 10 p.m. ET.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She is also a serious boxing fan covering the Sweet Science for Communities. Read more Ringside Seat in Communities Digital News. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego. Gayle can be reached via Google +
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