This fight was called the main boxing event of the spring. Given the sensational result, it can even be called the main fight of the year.
The absolute world champion in the super middleweight Alvarez decided to conquer a new peak and chose a "light heavy" victim - literally and figuratively, as he believed. Canelo respected his opponent, but deep down he clearly believed that he would hardly be more difficult than with other boxers like Bivol.
“Bivol is really good. Let's see if I can stop him. He looks like Gennady Golovkin and Sergey Kovalev. I have a lot of experience fighting stylistically different boxers, which makes me a really great boxer. The main task is to remove Bivol's jab. I know how to do it. I think that Bivol will be better prepared for the fight than Kovalev. I think he is smarter than Kovalev. However, they have similar styles: they throw a lot of jab, it’s hard to get closer to them, ”Alvarez assessed his capabilities on the air before the fight.
Alvarez said he would have the hardest time in the first six rounds, but he was wrong. At first, he looked better than Bivol, but the opponent quickly seized the initiative. Especially the superiority of Bivol began to affect in the second half. The Mexican clearly felt out of place, that is, out of his weight. It was much more difficult for him to withstand a marathon distance of 12 rounds than an opponent for whom this is a native category.
Bivol landed a series of punches and pinned Alvarez to the rope. Canelo could not do anything about it, he was nervous and even in desperation he lifted Dimitri on his shoulder. After the fight, it was read on the face of the Mexican that he had already come to terms with the defeat, which was the second in his career. The first he suffered nine years ago from the legendary Floyd Mayweather.
For Dmitry Bivol, this victory was the 20th in a row in the professional ring and at the moment - the main one in his career. For the first time he defeated a truly great boxer.
“Thanks to all the fans who came. Happy Cinco de Mayo to all. I proved to everyone that I am the best. Sorry for ruining Canelo's plans for a third fight with Golovkin. Thank you very much, Canelo, for the fight! I have a lot of respect for him and his team,” Bivol said immediately after the fight.
Main matches of the tournament:
• Dmitry Bivol (20-0) defeated Saul Alvarez (57-2-2) via unanimous decision (115-113, 115-113, 115-113) to retain the WBA light heavyweight title;
• Montana Love (18-0-1) defeated Gabriel Valenzuela (25-3-1) via unanimous decision (114-112, 114-112, 114-112) to capture the IBF bantamweight title;
• Shahram Giyasov (13-0-0) defeated Christian Gomez (22-3-1) via unanimous decision to win the IBF welterweight title;
Canelo vs. Bivol - Highlights