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Canelo faces Angulo this Saturday on Showtime PPV

canelo3By Dan Ambrose: This Saturday boxing fans are going to get the chance to find out if the red-haired former WBA/WBC junior middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (42-1-1-, 30 KO’s) is for real or just a pretender built up by Golden Boy Promotions when Canelo faces Alfredo Angulo (22-3, 18 KO’s) on Showtime pay-per-view in a 12 round bout at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. The fact that Canelo is asking boxing fans to pay to see him fight with him coming off of a one-sided loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. from last September is one of the oddest things that you’ll ever see.

It makes zero sense for Canelo to suddenly have fans having to pay to see him on PPV after a one-sided loss like the one he suffered against Mayweather. And what makes even less sense is for Canelo to pick Angulo for his first fight on PPV. That’s a senseless move, and you have to wonder whether Golden Boy Promotions tried to talk some sense into the head of the flat-footed Canelo or if they thought it was a great idea.

I think it’s a splendidly terrible idea. Canelo needed to at least get a 3-4 wins under his belt against legit junior middleweights – instead of the usual welterweights he tends to fight – before he made the announcement that his future fights will all be the PPV variety. The perfect fight for Canelo to make himself a PPV fight would be against someone like Gennady Golovkin or Erislandy Lara. Those guys can fight, and aren’t coming off of a knockout loss the way that Angulo is with his 10h round stoppage defeat at the hands of Lara in his last fight a year ago in June of 2013.

Choosing Angulo to fight on Saturday puts a huge amount of pressure on Canelo’s shoulders to where he won’t have an excuse if he somehow ends up losing the fight. Getting beaten by a talented fighter like Mayweather Jr. has a built in excuse mechanism for Canelo, and took full advantage of it by saying that he was beaten by the best. But that excuse isn’t there for Canelo in the Angulo fight. If he loses to Angulo, then things will be looking bleak for Canelo in terms of him being a top fighter. He already had a life and death fight against Austin Trout last year in Texas in which three judges gave Canelo a lopsided win in a fight that looked like Canelo lost.

Canelo was exposed in that fight against Trout regardless of the odd scoring by the three judges. I had Canelo losing that fight by a wide margin, but I wasn’t surprised that he got the win because he was the popular name fighter in that bout. If Angulo beats Canelo, which is a real possibility, then Golden Boy Promotions will likely need to start matching Canelo against welterweights again like what they’ve been doing since Canelo moved up to the junior middleweight in 2011. Canelo fought for the WBC junior middleweight title against a welterweight in Matthew Hatton instead of a fighter from the 154 lb title.

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