By Keith Idec
Saul “Canelo” Alvarez has prepared himself well for Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s habit of forcefully using his elbows and forearms in fights.
Alvarez’s sparring partners strategically used their elbows and forearms to ready the unbeaten Mexican star for those types of tactics Saturday night at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, where he’ll meet Mayweather in the biggest fight of his eight-year pro career (Showtime Pay-Per-View; $74.95 in HD; 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).
“I’m not saying that he’s a dirty fighter,” Alvarez, 23, said. “I would never say that, because he’s not. He’s not a dirty fighter, but he’s a fighter that has a lot of experience and obviously, yes, sometimes he does use his elbows and forearms. But it’s a tactic so that he can get you off your game plan. Then he can counter you when you’re trying to pull out of that. Obviously, he’s a fighter that has a lot of experience and he uses that to his advantage.”
Shane Mosley, who lost to Mayweather (44-0, 26 KOs) and Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KOs), has warned Alvarez about what he considers Mayweather’s willingness to “cheap shot” an opponent to gain an advantage. Alvarez trained for the 12-round, 152-pound showdown at Mosley’s gym in Big Bear Lake, Calif.
Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.