It’s been a respectful promotion between Mexican countrymen Canelo Alvarez and Jaime Munguia. 

But all love will be lost once the gloves get laced up on Saturday night during a Cinco de Mayo showdown at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

The undisputed super middleweight champion Alvarez (60-2-2, 39 KOs) will be fighting a compatriot for the first time since 2017 when he dominated Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. during a unanimous decision win.  

Alvarez’s move to face Munguia (43-0, 34 KOs) comes after years of insisting his preference was not to fight a fellow Mexican. 

“I said that, yes, but sometimes you need to do it,” Alvarez told BoxingScene. “This fight with Jaime is going to be very big and important for Mexico. I love being involved in these kind of fights. I'm proud to give the opportunity to Jaime Munguia. [We are] the first two Mexicans to fight for four belts.”

The mild-mannered build-up to the fight has been filled with plenty of mutual respect.

It’s been a far cry from some of the testy promotions Alvarez has endured during his 168-pound reign against the likes of Billy Joe Saunders and Caleb Plant in 2021. 

The fight against Plant also marks the last stoppage victory that Alvarez has scored. A unanimous decision loss to Dmitrii Bivol in 2022 was followed by workmanlike wins on the scorecards against Gennadiy Golovkin, John Ryder, and Jermell Charlo. 

The youthful Munguia’s affinity for offense, combined with his deficiencies on defense, should result in a fan-friendly fight and bring out untapped firepower we haven’t seen from Alvarez in recent fights. 

Could a civil war be in store? 

“Yeah, I always love being involved in a war,” said Alvarez. “The styles make fights. With our two styles, it's going to be a really good fight. He's coming with the mentality to give everything to win. And I am the same.”

Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer, and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and the MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on X (formerly Twitter), Instagram, LinkedIn, and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, through email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at], or via