David Morrell Jr. just couldn’t see the Canelo Alvarez-Dmitry Bivol bout unfolding any other way than exactly as it transpired Saturday night.
The unbeaten WBA world super middleweight champion predicted Bivol would out-box the Mexican superstar in their 12-round, 175-pound championship match at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The Cuban-born Morrell still hopes he gets the opportunity to challenge Alvarez in the 168-pound division, where Alvarez admitted after his unanimous-decision defeat to Bivol that he is best suited to compete.
Morrell commented on Alvarez’s first defeat in 8½ years Tuesday during a virtual press conference to promote his upcoming title defense against Kalvin Henderson.
“Canelo is an excellent fighter and an outstanding person,” Morrell said through a translator. “I’ve gotten the chance to meet him and I think that he is absolutely awesome. But as far as the fight goes, I think that everything happened the way I said that it was going to happen. Where Bivol is someone that is versatile and had mobility. And that mobility gave Canelo a lot of trouble because Bivol was able to get in and out whenever he wanted, and Canelo never really figured that out. And then you saw the result of what happened at the end of the fight.”
Russia’s Bivol beat Alvarez by the same score, 115-113, on the scorecards of judges Tim Cheatham, Dave Moretti and Steve Weisfeld. Most media members seated ringside scored Bivol (20-0, 11 KOs) a wider winner than that over Mexico’s Alvarez (57-2-2, 39 KOs), who hadn’t lost since undefeated Floyd Mayweather beat him by majority decision in their 12-round, 154-pound title fight in September 2013 at MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Promoter Eddie Hearn, one of Alvarez’s staunchest supporters, stated that he thinks Alvarez won only three rounds in their DAZN pay-per-view main event.
CompuBox counted 68 more connections overall for Bivol (152-of-710 to 84-of-495). According to CompuBox’s unofficial tally, Bivol landed more power punches (106-of-292 to 74-of-266) and more jabs (46-of-418 to 10-of-229).
Morrell, meanwhile, is preparing to make an optional defense of his secondary championship on June 4 against Henderson (15-1-1, 11 KOs), of Fayetteville, Arkansas. The 24-year-old Morrell (6-0, 5 KOs) is heavily favored to defeat Henderson, who lost a 10-round unanimous decision to Cleveland’s Isaiah Steen (16-0, 12 KOs) two fights ago.
Showtime will televise Morrell-Henderson as the 12-round opener of a doubleheader from The Armory in Minneapolis, Morrell’s adopted hometown. Philadelphia’s Stephen Fulton (20-0, 8 KOs) is scheduled to defend his WBC and WBO 122-pound titles against Daniel Roman (29-3-1, 10 KOs), a former IBF and WBA champ from Los Angeles, in the 12-round main event.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.
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