Boxing: Floyd Mayweather’s old tricks can bring home the bacon against Saul Alvarez

 

Boxing Correspondent

All of the Floyd Mayweather and Saul Alvarez tickets sold in hours, raising nearly $20m (£16.8m). Then 25,000 seats at screenings in Las Vegas sold out.

Tickets for 9,000 cinema screens all over America are now sold out and more than one and a half million viewers have so far paid $79.99 to watch the fight on pay-per-view television.

The unbeaten pair will probably split about $80m (£67m) tonight when all the sums have been collected; Mayweather will receive about $60m (£50m) if all goes to plan at the box office.

The dollar signs have once again dominated a Mayweather fight and there has been little talk of the actual boxing as the show has rolled  towards financial records through a carnival of mad, bling-heavy encounters.

Mayweather is fighting the type of man he has regularly found a reason to avoid during a glittering career that has been brilliantly handled. However, he is a businessman and picked Alvarez, who is young, ambitious, clever, bigger and fearless, because his last fight, which was his first with ShowTime, was not a major success.

Alvarez, who is 13 years younger, increased the pressure on Mayweather for a fight with a very good win the last time he boxed. He was, therefore, the top contender and when Mayweather’s masterclass against Robert Guerrero fell short at the box office, all eyes switched from a gang of ringside hopefuls to the one man not there: Alvarez. Mayweather made Guerrero, who had lost just once and had been a champion at four different weights, look like a novice on the night.

“I don’t need him as much as he needs me,” said Alvarez. “I had other fights planned and I knew I would get to him eventually. It has just  happened sooner, but not too soon. I’m ready now.”

Making the fight happen was easy after Alvarez agreed to Mayweather’s proposal that the fighting weight drop from the light-middle limit of 154lbs to 152lbs. Alvarez was only 153lbs for his last fight, accepted easily and is allowed to gain as much weight as possible in the 30 hours between weigh-in and first bell.

Tonight’s fight will be decided by speed; if Mayweather’s speed has naturally diminished further during the last year the fight will be difficult and if Alvarez can work his feet a bit faster it will be close. However, Mayweather’s key to success has been his effortless ability to slowly adapt to each real challenge and make the transition look easy. Alvarez needs to be alert and forget any nonsense about Mayweather running for 12 rounds.

Alvarez can put enough pressure on to make Mayweather twist and squirm but at some point, in  between long breathers, the experience and memories stored from 15 years and 20 world-title fights will open a gap as the 36-year-old shows the Mexican a trick or two or three. I would be shocked if it is easy for Mayweather – less shocked if Alvarez won on points – but I know it will be a proper fight, with glory and blood in equal measure.

Incidentally, the WBC and WBA belts at light-middle, which have been made from gold for this fight, are also on offer to go with the small fortune.

Mayweather v Alvarez is live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky channel 437/Virgin ch 546) Watch at boxnation.com

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
An iceberg in Ilulissat, Greenland; researchers have been studying the phenomena of the melting glaciers and their long-term ramifications for the rest of the world (Getty)
news
Environment
environment
Arts and Entertainment
Hugh Jackman bears his claws and loses the plot in X-Men movie 'The Wolverine'
film
Arts and Entertainment
'Knowledge is power': Angelina Jolie has written about her preventive surgery
film
News
Zayn has become the first member to leave One Direction. 'I have to do what feels right in my heart,' he said
peopleWe wince at anguish of fans, but his 1D departure shows the perils of fame in the social media age
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Junior Web Designer - Client Liaison

£6 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join a gro...

Recruitment Genius: Service Delivery Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Service Delivery Manager is required to join...

Recruitment Genius: Massage Therapist / Sports Therapist

£12000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A opportunity has arisen for a ...

Ashdown Group: Practice Accountant - Bournemouth - £38,000

£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...

Day In a Page

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing