Tonight was a night of highs and lows. For starters, Canelo Alvarez is your new WBC middleweight champion, and it only seems logical that he has to fight Gennady Golovkin next. He was the much larger man in the ring tonight, and it's clear he's a legitimate middleweight fighter, no matter what he and Oscar De La Hoya say. Canelo says he's willing to fight GGG right now, so lets just see what happens.
As for the fight itself, I thought Cotto fought extremely well for the most part. He was well conditioned, and almost always threw punches in bunches. The story of this fight was really the difference between Cotto out-hustling Canelo, and Canelo's fewer shots landing heavier, being the bigger man. I thought Cotto outboxed Canelo really well for the first half of the fight, but it became clear that the size and power difference began to wear on the older Cotto. He still had his legs under him at the end, but you could see he took some punishment. He also dealt it out, but his punches just didn't have an equal effect on Canelo. Bad Left Hook scored the fight a 114-114 draw. The official judges had it way too wide for my liking, with scorecards of 117-111, 119-109, 118-110.
One could probably draw a lot of inferences from those scorecards, like by saying how Cotto refusing to pay his sanctioning fees, and then railing against the WBC leading into the fight didn't curry him any favor with the powers that be, but, you know...So now we have the young and popular Canelo Alvarez as your middleweight champion, and with a huge fight with Gennady Golovkin looming, who's really going to complain very loudly, right?!
The fight preceding the main event was a barnburner. Takashi Miura and Francisco Vargas went at it tonight in a back and forth battle, almost reminiscent of Berto-Ortiz. This one will surely be a fight of the year contender. After Vargas was getting the better of Miura early, Miura drops him with a hard left hand that badly hurt Vargas. The two would slug it out for the next few rounds, and with Miura coming on strong late, Vargas comes out and drops Miura at the beginning 9th round. Miura never got the chance to recover, as Vargas stormed on him to for a shocking TKO stoppage.
Also on the undercard was a bout between the elite technician Guillermo Rigondeaux and Drian Francisco. Rigondeaux is elite in every department but being an entertainer. This was the worst fight of all time...OF ALL TIME! I hated it, you hated it, the crowd hated it, and Rigodeaux really didn't give two sh*ts. It was dreadfully painful to watch.
Any of us who ridiculed HBO for "thowing up" upon hearing the name Rigondeaux should reassess their feelings after this one. Rigondeaux really dropped the ball here. He had been previously blackballed from HBO and released from Top Rank because his style put fans to sleep, and now having just signed a deal with Roc Nation and getting a spot on a huge event he really could've showcased himself. He didn't. He did nothing. I mean, he won, but he didn't win any fans, and most people gladly forget him tomorrow. More than that, I'm sure Roc Nation Sports is actively searching for their receipt, hoping to return Rigo for whatever they can salvage. I have no idea how they'll promoter him, and by the time they figure it out, if ever, he'll be too old.
The first fight on the PPV opener was Jayson Velez vs. Ronny Rios. This was another close battle correctly had Rios winning, being the aggressor all the way through.