By Jake Donovan
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez has officially arrived as a major box office attractions on both sides of the border. An announced sellout of more than 38,000 fans are expected to pack the Alamodome in San Antonio (TX) for his 154 lb. title unification bout with fellow unbeaten Austin Trout.
The bout takes place Saturday evening, live on Showtime beginning at 10PM ET.
Alvarez (41-0-1, 30KO) takes part in his sixth title defense, though facing by far his toughest test to date. The majority of Alvarez two-year reign has come against bloated welterweights and faded former stars, though he has performed like a professional every time out. The 22-year old could have taken a different route, but instead demanded this particular showdown.
Trout (26-0, 14KO) officially entered the running the moment he emphatically outboxed former three-division champ Miguel Cotto last December in New York City. The American southpaw has played the role of road warrior several times before, including a vacant title win over Canelo’s older brother Rigoberto Alvarez two years ago to ignite his current reign.
What will come of the classic matchup between boxer and puncher-boxer? Read on to see how the staff at Boxingscene.com believes the action will go down.
B-SCENE PREDICTIONS – SAUL ‘CANELO’ ALVAREZ v. AUSTIN ‘NO DOUBT’ TROUT
“Canelo by decision.”
- Damien Acevedo (Alvarez)
“I think Saturday night is going to be a coming out party for Canelo Alvarez. Trout has the slight edge in competition faced but some of the things Miguel Cotto did to Trout lead me to believe Alvarez will have a lot of success. I expect Trout to start well and Canelo to dominate from the middle rounds on. Canelo TKO11”
- Ryan Burton (Alvarez)
“The industry-wide wonder is whether last week’s formula in Rigondeaux-Donaire will hold true here as well. Trout is supremely talented, but unlike Rigondeaux (who is the greater pure boxer) faces an opponent who knows how to rely upon his strength when boxing doesn’t get it done. Trout enjoys an early lead, but Alvarez takes control midway through and leaves with a unanimous decision that won’t require the typical shoddy Texas officiating.”
- Jake Donovan (Alvarez)
“Unlike others who think he's only as good as the iffy competition he's faced, I disagree. I think he'll prove how good he is the better competition he faces. That process begins with Trout. Says here that he’ll overcome a strong, athletic challenger with grinding toughness. Alvarez UD 12.”
- Lyle Fitzsimmons (Alvarez)
“Trout by decision. I think the moment is not lost on Trout and he realizes Canelo is indeed the gateway to bigger things for the talented southpaw out of Las Cruces, NM. Trout also knows what it is like to fight in front of a hostile crowd, having to travel to Mexico twice and New York once. Canelo is talented but does he have the intangibles when his talent simply isn't enough. We shall find out.”
- Ernie Gabion (Trout)
“There is much debate between Trout and Alvarez but the sheer fact is I am sold on Trout but not so much Alvarez. With Trout, Alvarez is taking a leap up in competition taking on a naturally bigger and possibly stronger Trout. Trout will not be bullied like Alvarez's past victims and will out work Alvarez every step of the way. My broadcast partner on ATG Radio, Frank Stea, feels Alvarez will surprise a lot of us and win; in my opinion the only thing the surprised us is him actually taking the fight. Trout by dominant Unanimous Decision.”
- Tim Kudgis (Trout)
“I think power will be the deciding factor in both of this weekend's headline fights. Trout/Alvarez will be close, and Trout will win his share of rounds. He will likely win more rounds that Alvarez on at least 1 scorecard. He will also be dropped by the stronger Alvarez, and being put on his bottom will make all the difference. SD 12, Alvarez”
- Richard Najdowski (Alvarez)
“Yet another tough fight to pick. Interesting clash of styles. Trout is riding high following the win over Miguel Cotto and showed a lot of composure during that victory. Still, I have to give the edge to Alvarez here. For some reason I just feel he will find a way to break through for his biggest victory.”
- Chris Robinson (Alvarez)
“Trout Dec. Canelo: Neither of these two has faced overwhelming opposition to this point, but because Canelo is the star the narrative is partly about who he hasn't faced yet. Trout is the answer to the question, "what happens when he faces a top Jr. Middleweight?" Against Trout, the answer will probably be lose. Trout has better defense and should be able to counter Canelo effectively all night en route to a big win.”
- Cliff Rold (Trout)
“Canelo SD - I think both Alvarez and Trout will bring the best out of each other. I see a tactical fight that turns into a firefight only to go back to a tactical affair and so on, and so on. I see Alvarez getting a close split decision victory in a fight most will feel Trout won as controversy will set up demand for a rematch.”
- Luis Sandoval (Alvarez)
“Alvarez UD Trout. Habit is the key. Saul Alvarez is more Nonito Donaire than the Filipino Flash was the last Saturday night. And, yeah, Austin Trout isn't as rigondesque as some experts think of him, despite proximity of the styles. Unlike natural counterpuncher Donaire, Avarez is a straightforward stalker. He will try to grind Trout from the get-go. Being outboxed in the opening rounds, the Mexican will adjust, deliver more physical tricks and then out-tough his opponent in a close fight. If he is not, his cause will be carefully aided by the judges.”
- Alexey Sukachev (Alvarez)
: Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez 8, Austin ‘No Doubt’ Trout 3
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: