In exactly one month, Floyd Mayweather will put his undefeated record on the line against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Unlike his most recent fights, though, Mayweather may not have an easy time extending his unbeaten streak.
At just 23 years old, Alvarez has also never lost a fight. He’s 42-0-1 in his career, while Mayweather is looking to improve his record to 45-0. The much younger Alvarez, who was born more than a decade after his opponent, is ready to challenge the best pound-for-pound boxer today.
"I'm a strong-minded fighter," Alvarez recently said. "I'm not going to fight the fight he wants me to do. I will fight the fight I need to fight to win."
Mayweather is the favorite, entering the bout with his odds to win set at minus-300, according to Bovada. However, Alvarez’s plus-230 betting odds are much better than Mayweather’s recent opponents. In Mayweather’s last three fights, his odds to be victorious were always, at least, twice as good.
Alvarez is one of the most talented fighters in the sport. He’s knocked out four of his last six opponents and won as a light welterweight, welterweight and light middleweight. Against Mayweather, he’ll fight at a catch weight of 152 pounds.
The biggest question surrounding Alvarez’s chances to pull off the upset may be whether or not the fight is happening too soon. He’s done a lot in a short amount of time, but might not be quite ready to defeat the 36-year-old. He’s coming off an impressive victory against Austin Trout in April, but has never faced anyone of Mayweather's caliber. Still, Alvarez is confident heading into his most high-profile encounter.
"Every fight brings out something different in me, and it will be no different in this one," Alvarez said. "I have learned and gained from all of those experiences. And as I've often said, the public hasn't seen the best of me yet. I need someone like Mayweather to bring that out of me."
Even after 17 years in the ring, Mayweather hasn’t shown much vulnerability in his most recent fights. Against Robert Guerrero on May 4, Mayweather only lost three of the 12 rounds, according to the official judges’ scorecards. He landed 82 more punches than Guererro, as well as 40 percent of his attempts.
The Pay-Per-View match is set for Sept.14 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Lucas Martin Matthysse vs. Danny Garcia for the WBA Super World/WBC light welterweight title highlights the undercard.