By Jason Kim: The March 5th HBO bout between unbeaten WBC Silver junior middleweight champion Saul Alvarez (35-0-1, 26 KO’s) and European Boxing Union (EBU) welterweight Mathew Hatton (41-4-2, 16 KO’s) will be formally announced this Friday. The fight will be taking place at the Honda Center, in Anaheim, California. With the fight being shown on HBO, tt’s going to be a great opportunity for the 20-year-old Alvarez to show off his talent against the weak punching brother of Ricky Hatton.
Matthew can’t punch, isn’t particularly fast and has faced most European opposition during his 11-year pro career. He has some talent, but he’s going to be facing a real slugger in Alvarez and it’s going to be difficult for Hatton to stay upright with Alvarez throwing bombs all night. Alvarez is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions, and they’re taking him slowly up the ranks by matching him mostly against older and weaker fighters. Hatton, 29, is young compared to Alvarez’s last two opponents Carlos Baldomir and Lovemore N’dou, both of which were 39. Hatton was obviously picked out for Alvarez due to his last name and because he can’t punch.
Alvarez’s handlers aren’t about to put him in with someone that can probably beat him like Erislandy Lara and Alfredo Angulo. I think both of those fighters would soundly beat Alvarez and knock him out. He’s likely to be kept away from anyone really good for awhile until he can display some better defense and hand speed. Right now, Alvarez is just too wide open on defense and his hand speed is poor. He was staggered by tiny 5’5″ lightweight Jose Miguel Cotto last year and that obviously has sent some alarm bells ringing indicating that Alvarez needs to be brought along extra slowly.