By Michael Montero: The doors at the MGM Grand Garden Arena opened for fans this morning around 10AM, and within minutes the venue was buzzing with electricity. More than ten thousand poured in to find a good seat as Golden Boy and K2 Promotions set up for the Canelo-Golovkin weigh-ins. Crazed fans donned Mexican and Kazakhstani flags cheering for their man, swooping up merchandise and debating their predictions for the main event as the undercard fighters hit the scales. By the time Saul Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin hit the stage, the arena was in a fever pitch.
(Photo credit: Tom Hogan – Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions)
It is undeniable now, this is one of the biggest events in boxing for years. And unlike the Money Grab of the Century that took place in May of 2015, and the circus that left town three weeks ago, this is a true 50-50 fight between two elite-level boxers in their physical prime, facing each other at the right time.
Although several boxers on the un-televised portion of the undercard missed weight (including former American Olympic medalist Marlen Esparza), all eight of the PPV card combatants hit their contractually agreed upon weight. Here are the details:
Ryan Martin (19-0, 11KO) vs Francisco Rojo (19-2, 12KO)
10 rounds, lightweights
Ryan Martin weighed in at the lightweight limit of 135lbs even, looking as if there was not an ounce of fat on him. Rojo, of Mexico, came in slightly over at 135.5lbs, then made weight upon second attempt.
Randy Caballero (24-0, 14KO) vs Diego De La Hoya (19-0, 9KO)
10 rounds, super bantamweights
California native Caballero, who has failed to make weight in the past, came in light at 121lbs. In fact, he even ate a donut on the scale just to show how comfortable he was. Diego, cousin of the famous his promoter and former great Oscar De La Hoya, came in right at 122lbs. During the stare down, Caballero pushed his forehead into De La Hoya’s, prompting the Mexican to push him back. Caballero fell back into one of the ring card girls, nearly knocking her off the stage. These two do NOT like each other and this will be a terrific fight!
Joseph Diaz Jr (24-0, 13KO) vs Rafael Rivera (25-0-2, 16KO)
WBC title eliminator, 12 rounds, featherweights
Rivera, a late replacement opponent from Tijuana, came in over the limit at 127lbs. However, after only 15 minutes, he made 126lbs on his second attempt. Former American Olympian Diaz came in right at 126lbs. The winner of this bout will be in line for a title shot against current titlist Gary Russell Jr.
Saul Alvarez (49-1-1, 34KO) vs Gennady Golovkin (37-0, 33KO)
WBC, WBA, IBF, IBO, RING middleweight world championship, 12 rounds
GGG made his way to the stage first, clearly enjoying the moment, letting the amazing crowd atmosphere sink in Canelo made an abrupt entrance to the ring, appearing to be anxious to hit the scales and dehydrate. The crowd was clearly pro Canelo, screaming wildly as Michael Buffer announced him. Both men came in right at 160lbs, looking to be in the best shape of their professional careers. This will be a fight for the ages.
Michael Montero can be found on Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and Instagram via @MonteroOnBoxing