Mexican superstar Saul "Canelo" Alvarez brutally overpowered England's Rocky Fielding with a dominant display on his New York City debut Saturday to become a three-weight world champion.
Alvarez, who is the reigning World Boxing Council and World Boxing Association middleweight world champion following his thrilling victory over Gennady Golovkin in September, had little trouble in moving up in weight class and defeating Fielding, who held a second tier version of the WBA's super-middleweight title.
Alvarez sent Fielding to the canvas in the very first round with a crunching body shot and remained in complete control. He delivered a similar punch in the second which was also too much for the Englishman to take before the fight was stopped towards the end of the third following two further knock-downs.
It was, ultimately, a total mismatch. Fielding just didn't have the power to compete, and when he went down twice in the third, referee Ricky Gonzalez correctly stopped the fight with 22 seconds left of the round.
It was a brave effort from the 31-year-old from Liverpool, who deserves great credit for accepting the task of entering the ring against the brilliant flame-haired Mexican, who extended his record to 51-1-2 with 35 knockouts in his first appearance since signing a record-breaking 11-fight, $365 million contract with sports streaming service DAZN.
IBF middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs was at ringside, and called for a fight with Canelo, who returns to the ring in May in Las Vegas.
"He [Canelo] looked phenomenal. The body shots were perfect, Fielding had no answers. It was a great performance from Canelo, he did what he had to do and I'm happy for him," Jacobs said to Sky Sports.
"That's a fight [Canelo vs Jacobs] that is very possible. With [David] Lemieux unfortunately being out now with health issues, there's even more of a stronger possibility that the fight can happen.
"Me being champion helps also. I'm not sure if they want to do the trilogy with [Gennady] Golovkin. It's time for the fans to see something different, I guess a new champion. Outside of Canelo, 'GGG' makes the most sense. It's about reaching the pinnacle of my career, fighting the best fights out there, I want the fights that the fans respect.
"Canelo has all the belts, that's my goal, I just want the guy with the belt and I want to be considered number one. He's a pound-for-pound star and it'd be an honour to share the ring with him."