Canelo wins controversial decision over Lara in Las Vegas
(Photo credit: Esther Lin/Showtime) By Chris Williams: Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (44-1-1, 31 KO’s) won a 12 round split decision over Erislandy Lara (19-2-2, 12 KO’s) in a fight that Lara appeared to but was given the shaft at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. I don’t blame Lara for the loss.
I pretty much blame Lara’s trainer Ronnie Shields, because he should have been lighting a fire under Lara’s backside by telling him that he wasn’t going to win a decision against a popular fighter like Canelo unless he hit him with everything but the kitchen sink. You don’t beat a guy that means as much to boxing as Canelo unless you trounce him, and Lara didn’t do that tonight. He dominated the 23-year-old Canelo and made him look almost as bad as Floyd Mayweather Jr did, but he didn’t totally humiliate him the way he probably needed to in order to get the two judges that scored it for Canelo to give it to Lara.
Canelo was wide open for everything that Lara threw, but the problem was Lara wasn’t unloading on him the way that he needed to do in order to beat a popular fighter like Canelo. When you’re fighting a popular fighter, you’ve got to batter them nonstop punches because there’s little chance that you’re going to win a decision if the fight is close.
The judges scored it 117-111 and 115-113 for Canelo. The other judge had it 115-113 for Lara.
Austin Trout, who lost to Canelo last year, said this on his twitter tonight “Lara should get it! Wow!! Levi Martinez [the judge that scored it 117-111 for Canelo] you’re not from Las Cruces. Even though bad decisions are bad for boxing, Canelo is good for boxing, so I’d make your conclusions from there.”
In other words, Lara won the fight, but the judges took away his victory but it’s still good for boxing because Canelo is popular.
Lara did an admirable job of clowning Canelo in the rounds 1 through 6. But in the last 6 rounds, Lara didn’t batter Canelo the way that he needed to for him to for him to win over the other two judges. Lara probably was never going to do enough to impress the judge that scored it 117-111, because with a score like that, Lara would have needed a knockout to beat Canelo.
Canelo was landing an occasional body shot from the 4th round on, but we’re still talking rare body shots. Lara was landing the cleaner shots to the head, and doing a great job of making Canelo miss with his punches to the body and head. Lara did a superb job of making Canelo miss even when throwing to the body.
It was surprising to see how Canelo couldn’t even land body shots, because that’s supposedly the surefire way to hit mobile fighters, but it didn’t work tonight because Lara did such a great job of making Canelo miss by moving his midsection away from the shots.
Lara had a few rough rounds in 5 through 7, but from the 8th round on Lara got reenergized and was able to connect with the harder, cleaner landing shots.
It was difficult to see Canelo winning any of the rounds from the 8th round on because he was simply missing his shots. I doesn’t matter if you’re the aggressor the way that Canelo was. If you’re missing shots, then you have to give the rounds for the fighter that is landing the punches and that was Lara.