Mike Alvarado will face Ruslan Provodnikov at Denver's First Bank Center on October 19, with HBO televising the WBO junior welterweight title fight. It's a homecoming for Alvarado, as he returns to his home state coming off of the biggest win of his career on March 30, when he outboxed Brandon Rios in an exciting rematch over 12 rounds.
Provodnikov, of course, is coming off of a great performance of his own in a narrow, thrilling loss to Timothy Bradley on March 16. While Bradley and even Rios have moved on to pay-per-view main events this fall, Alvarado (34-1, 23 KO) gets a chance to return home the hero, in what should be an exciting fight that his team is calling a "perfect matchup."
"This matchup is perfect for Mike," said Henry Delgado, Alvarado's manager. "Mike can do what he wants. He can bang and he can box."
Top Rank's Carl Moretti says this is no easy fight, and will be a big night:
"When Mike reached this level, you fight the elite every time out," said Carl Moretti, vice president of promoter Top Rank. "That's what he's doing. This is not a showcase fight. Mike proved his mettle. Provodnikov showed what he had against Bradley. It's a big night for boxing."
Provodnikov (22-2, 15 KO) is returning to the 140-pound division for this fight after a brief move up to face Bradley. It's his natural weight class, so the move back down shouldn't be an issue.
Is Provodnikov made to order for Alvarado, or is "Mile High" Mike ripe for an upset at home?