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Canelo can’t afford to lose to Kirkland

Canelo Alvarez James DeGaleBy Dan Ambrose: Golden Boy Promotions President turned down the idea of putting his flagship fighter Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (44-1-1 31 kOs) back in the ring with Erislandy Lara to clear up the controversy of their fight last year.

Instead, De La Hoya told Lara to get in the back of the line for another shot at Canelo, even though it’s a fight that Canelo needed more than Lara. So instead of De La Hoya doing to smart thing by putting Canelo back in with Lara, he’s picked out an inactive fighter James Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs) for Canelo to fight this Saturday night at the Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas.

Kirkland hasn’t fought in close to two years, and he’s someone that isn’t really talked about anymore when boxing fans discuss the top fighters in the 154 pound division. Instead of talking about Kirkland, fans talk about Lara, the Charlo brothers and Demetrius Andrade when they talk about the best fighters at junior middleweight.

The Kirkland fight is more of a fight that will get the attention of the hardcore boxing fans that remember Kirkland for when he was active fighter and fighting at a high level many years ago.

Kirkland’s ring rust and subsequent weight gain in the last two years should leave him more than vulnerable enough for Canelo to get an easy win against him. But if things don’t work out like De La Hoya is hoping with Canelo getting beaten or out-boxed again by yet another opponent, then it’ll be bad for Golden Boy. We’ve already seen Canelo get controversial wins over Austin Trout and Lara, and get dominated by Mayweather.

Getting a controversial win over Kirkland too or a loss to him will be a huge blow to Canelo’s career. It’s not the same getting beaten by the likes of Kirkland as it is in getting beaten by a talented fighter like Mayweather Jr. That’s why Canelo is coming into this fight with a lot of pressure on him this Saturday. He can’t get out-boxed or out-slugged in this fight if he wants to continue forward as a pay-per-view fighter. This fight won’t be on PPV, but Canelo’s next fight in September is expected to be a PPV bout on HBO.

HBO World Championship Boxing will be televising this Saturday a 9PM ET/PT. Tickets are still on sale for the fight with them going for $350, $150, $100, $50, $25 and $10. The tickets can be purchased at Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000.

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