Ryan Maquinana of BoxingScene.com reports that the rumored fight between Saul "Canelo" Alvarez and Kermit Cintron is "practically finalized" for November 26 in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Alvarez (38-0-1, 28 KO) would be defending his WBC junior middleweight title in his fourth fight of 2011, while Cintron (33-4-1, 28 KO) is in a no-lose situation with Top Rank releasing him from a short-lived promotional deal and his career looking all but dead in the water right now.
A former welterweight titlist, Cintron has failed in almost all of his higher-profile fights, and was easily dealt with by Carlos Molina in his Top Rank debut in July. He followed that a month later with a clear but rather listless win over Antwone Smith on Friday Night Fights, and now he's in a position that might be as good as he's going to get for the rest of his career: He's seen as a non-threat with a little bit of name value left, and that has enabled him to land this fight, most likely. Don't kid yourself into thinking Golden Boy is going to put this fight together because they think Cintron is any danger to the 21-year-old Alvarez.
So far this year, Alvarez has beaten Matthew Hatton (though he couldn't make weight, the WBC put their vacant belt on him anyway), Ryan Rhodes, and Alfonso Gomez. All were solid wins, and both Hatton and Gomez, while underpowered and undersized to some degree, came to fight. Rhodes came to do something or other, but just didn't have it that June night in Mexico.
What does Cintron really bring to the table? He's got a nice-looking KO rate, but his power looks totally sapped at 154 pounds. He showed no real pop at all against Molina or Smith. He also just looks tired when he fights now -- almost disinterested, like he's not really there to do anything special. He also carries the tag of being a bit of a headcase, thanks to two fights with Antonio Margarito where he basically quit when realizing he couldn't hurt Margarito (or so goes the belief), his bizarre jump to the floor against Paul Williams, and his wild claim of a headbutt against Sergio Martinez in a fight where Cintron left with a draw despite getting knocked out first and later pretty clearly beaten on points.
It's a fight Golden Boy is setting up because they think it's safe, and because with Cintron's somewhat fraudulent knockout percentage, they can claim that clearly, they aren't sheltering young Canelo from punchers. (Cintron hasn't stopped anyone but Brazilian club fighter Juliano Ramos since 2007.)
The November 26 date is occupied on HBO by Adrien Broner, but he's also still without an opponent and it doesn't look like he's any closer to landing one, either. Broner may wind up taking a trip to Mexico for the Alvarez card if he does fight on 11/26, or I guess they could do a split site show by just picking up the Mexican TV feed of the Alvarez fight.
Now that this fight looks all but signed and sealed, do you like it? Not like it?