"This is going to be like our wars in fight No. 1 and fight No. 2. We are two warriors," said Alvarado. "We will go into the middle of the ring and mix it up. For me, all of this is for one thing - redemption."
Redemption is an interesting word for Alvarado to use in this context. I mean, he did win the rematch against Rios, didn't he? Perhaps this refers to some sort of bigger, career-defining redemption, being that he's only 3-3 in his last 6 fights - and the fights he's lost, he lost in barbaric fashion. Rios has been in some tough fights too, and we all knew it was only a matter of time before we saw them go head-to-head once more.
Todd duBeof of Top Rank, though, wouldn't have it any other way. This is a can't miss action trilogy, and probably the biggest money fight currently available to both fighters at this very moment.
"This is a rematch made in heaven. Their first two fights were barnburners and arguably ‘Fights of the Year,'" said Todd duBoef, president of Top Rank Promotions. "Alvarado and Rios know what is at stake. Fans can expect to see a finale that will rival - if not surpass - the legendary [Erik] Morales-[Marco Antonio] Barrera and [Manny] Pacquiao-[Juan Manuel] Marquez wars."
Now that's a big statement! Although it's not completely farfetched. In terms of pure action, I have no doubts they can possibly match or even exceed the drama of both Morales-Barrera and Pacquiao-Marquez, but there is one significant difference. The stakes were much higher for those other guys. Morales, Barrera, Pacquiao, and Marquez are all Hall of Fame fighters. They were fighting for pride, purse, and legacy. Neither Rios nor Alvarado are made of the kind of quality that those other men had - and in some ways, all Rios and Alvarado really have are each other. I think Top Rank even recognized that to a degree, which is why they held out on the immediate trilogy, hoping to get a few more bouts in before they completely ruined each other.
"If Alvarado wants to go to the center of the ring and trade, he will feel my power right away," said Rios. "A few of my big punches and he will change his game plan. That's when I hunt him down, win the fight."
That sounds just like every other Rios game plan, and in that sense, I expect him to be a man of his word. He really doesn't know how to fight any other way.