Canelo Alvarez Takes Out Sergey Kovalev:
Canelo Alvarez added another big name to his resume with an impressive knockout win against Sergey Kovalev in Alvarez's light heavyweight debut on November 2.
Now the question for Alvarez is what weight class will he fight next. Aside from the WBO light heavyweight title, Alvarez also holds the WBA “Super” middleweight title and the WBA “Regular” super middleweight title. In a post-fight interview, Alvarez said the plan all along was to probably go back to either middleweight or super middleweight, but will have to think about it after getting some rest.
The event was also marred by a horrible wait after the co-main event, roughly 90 minutes as DAZN wanted to wait until after UFC 244 had wrapped up. The idea of holding off until after the main event of UFC 244 was strictly a business decision to drive up subscription numbers. DAZN claims it worked with a surge in new subscriptions, but there's no real way to figure out whether or not it truly was the case.
With KSI vs. Logan Paul coming up on November 9, the amount of new subscribers (mainly from fans of both YouTubers) could potentially get the U.S. subscription count to close to one million if one were to assume that a majority of the 600,000 people that watched Alvarez fight Daniel Jacobs in May still retained their subscriptions up to this point.
Canelo vs. Kovalev Full Results:
- Canelo Alvarez defeated Sergey Kovalev by KO, round 11 to win the WBO Light Heavyweight title (Author’s Note I had Kovalev winning 96-94 at the time of the knockout, but you could realistically score 96-94 to either man): The fight opened up with Kovalev utilizing his jab to its fullest, keeping Alvarez away from his body and limiting his offense. Alvarez struggled mightily to get within range, but did manage to occasionally sneak in a body shot and hook to the chin. Despite Kovalev throwing the jab hundreds of times in the first half of the time, he failed to really hurt Alvarez with the jab that has secured him wins over Anthony Yarde and Eleider Alvarez. Starting with the second half of the fight, Alvarez started to break down Kovalev as the two fighters landed cleaner and better shots upstairs. But Alvarez ended everything late in the 11th round with a sudden burst of punches that immediately knocked Kovalev out. Alvarez scored a right and left hook to stagger Kovalev and the Mexican landed the final blow with a straight right to Kovalev’s chin, sending him to the ropes and forcing the referee to step in and stop the fight. Although Kovalev was by far the more active fighter, throwing 745 punches to Alvarez’s 345, Alvarez was more efficient and outlanded Kovalev 133 to 115. At the time of the knockout, Alvarez was up 96-94 on both Dave Moretti and Julie Lederman’s scorecards while Don Trella had the bout tied at 95-95. Fightful had Kovalev winning 96-94 on its scorecard
- Ryan Garcia defeated Romero Duno by KO, round 1 to win the WBC Silver & NABO Lightweight titles: Garcia had a championship-level performance in Las Vegas. Starting off, Garcia started landing right hands while stepping back to keep Duno at bay. Duno had one real opportunity to land body shots and fight on the inside, landing four straight right hooks to Garcia's ribs. Garcia then unloaded strong jabs and then a 1-2 combination that ended with a right to the side of Duno's head, ultimately resulting in Garcia knocking him out. Garcia is now primed for a breakout 2020, but whether or not he'll get a title shot next will be an entirely different question.
- Seniesa Estrada defeated Marlen Esparza by technical unanimous decision (90-81, 89-82, 88-83) to win the Interim WBA Female Flyweight title: This is a very rare fight where the women got to compete in three-minute rounds as opposed to the two minutes per round that women's boxing typically operates in. Estrada's left hook landed early and often for Esparza, but both women brought a ton of firepower and action throughout the fight. Although Esparza did manage to connect on plenty of shots, Estrada's left hand, jab work and ability to switch stances at times shined through in this bout. There was an accidental headbutt halfway through the fight that opened up a really nasty cut on Esparza's forehead and a lot of blood immediately poured out. Esparza continued fighting up until the ninth round concluded as the referee asked if she can continue and she said no. The fight then went to the scorecards after there was some confusion from the DAZN broadcast team as to whether or not the fight would go to the scorecards or if it was going to be ruled a TKO win for Estrada. This fight had been in the making for many months and the post-fight interviews for both women showed that the bad blood between them is far from over. Lots of action in this fight and has been the most entertaining one of the night up to this point.
- Blair Cobbs defeated Carlos Ortiz by TKO, round 6 to retain the NABF Welterweight title: Cobbs, a noted pro wrestling fan, came out to Triple H's "The Game" theme song. Ortiz opened things up with a left hook nearly to the back of the head towards the end of the first round that dropped Cobbs. Cobbs bounced back and started breaking Ortiz down with body shots and the occasional hook upstairs. Cobbs then managed to hurt Ortiz and knocked him down in the sixth round and that ended up being enough for Cobbs to win. Ortiz wasn't able to continue fighting after he noted that he got hurt from Cobbs' body punches. Cobbs has talent and charisma, but he is still very unpolished and leaves himself wide open to get knocked down. Still, there is no denying that Cobbs, who moves to 13-0-1, is typically in entertaining, competitive fights.
- Evan Holyfield defeated Nick Winstead by TKO, round 1: This was the pro debut of Evan, son of Evander Holyfield. Holyfield dropped Winstead in the opening seconds of the round after a furious combination of punches, but the referee immediately stopped at 16 seconds of the fight. Nothing to gauge from this fight, but at least Evan is 1-0 as a pro.
- Bakhram Murtazaliev defeated Jorge Fortea by unanimous decision (120-108, 119-109, 118-110) to win an IBF Junior Middleweight title eliminator: Murtazaliev came into the fight as much as a 45-1 favorite to win the bout. Murtazaliev controlled the pace early and was the more aggressive puncher, but Fortea's counter punches did open up some spots where he nearly hurt Murtazaliev. It began in the second round with a left hook upstairs from Fortea and then another big hook in the sixth round. Fortea didn't create enough offense to even make this a competitive fight on the scorecards. Murzataliev is now the mandatory challenger to the IBF title being held by Julian Williams, but there is no telling on if the IBF will order that fight to happen at some point in 2020.
- Tristan Kalkreuth defeated Twon Smith by unanimous decision (40-36, 40-36, 39-37): The intrigue of this fight is the fact that Kalkreuth is 17 years old while Smith is 32. Kalkreuth basically used his athleticism throughout the fight to outwork Smith, but Kalkreuth did show a good chin in the third round when he got hit hard by a right hook from Smith. The jury is still out on Kalkreuth's ceiling as a pro, but he's got plenty of years to continue developing.
- Meiirim Nursultanov defeated Cristian Olivas by unanimous decision (100-90, 100-90, 100-90) to win the WBC-USNBC Middleweight title: This was a pretty one-sided affair that never really got into second gear. Nursultanov is an unbeaten Kazakhstan middleweight, but unlike Gennadiy Golovkin, he doesn't possess the same killer power. Nursultanov does make that up by controlling the pace of the action well and limiting Olivas' offense. It was unlikely that Nursultanov would beat Olivas inside the distance, given how tough Olivas is against similar types of competition. Nursultanov holding the WBC-USNBC title opens the door to him getting bigger fights for 2020, but he's nowhere near a world title shot, especially given how the division currently stands.
- Bektemir Melikuziev defeated Clay Collard by TKO, round 4 in a non-TV match
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