Today Golden Boy Promotions has announced a fight all boxing fans have been dying to see. On July 12th, Mexican superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is set to face WBA junior middleweight champion of the world, Erislandy Lara, 31, of Cuba. Lara has been calling out Alvarez for months, even approaching Alvarez in person following his dominant stoppage last month over Alfredo Angulo. Many fans questioned whether Alvarez would give the deserving Lara his shot. After deliberating for weeks, Alvarez has shown the desire to be great and has granted Lara, and the fans, his wish.
It was one year ago when Alvarez scored the biggest victory of his career, a unanimous decision victory over Austin Trout to become the youngest man to ever unify world titles in the junior middleweight division. It would be a short reign for Alvarez, as he would surrender his championships five months later to the virtuoso Floyd Mayweather. Following the lop-sided loss to Mayweather, skeptics of Alvarez have gone onto say that he has been over hyped. That Alvarez will never be in the elite echelon of the sport. Lara on the other hand is coming off two of the best victories of his career, and has gained the respect from the boxing world as a top fighter in the junior middleweight division.
After dominating Austin Trout this past December in Brooklyn, Erislandy Lara has garnered a lot of believers within the sport. Some believing he is the cream of the crop of the division. Outside of the boxing world however, Lara has received little to no mainstream recognition. In contrast to Canelo Alvarez, who is known throughout the world and has already fought on pay per view multiple times. This has made Lara envious of Alvarez, and could culminate in some bad blood with Alvarez during the promotion for this heavily anticipated match up. When speaking of each other, both fighters seemed to not like each other even before the bout was signed.
Erislandy Lara is the man Canelo Alvarez will have to go through to prove to the naysayers and the rest of the world that he is legitimate. Alvarez desires to be seen as boxing’s best young fighter, and he can take a tremendous step towards that goal if he can defeat the crafty Lara. Lara wants to be known around the world for his talent in the way that Canelo has already accomplished. Thankfully, each man now has the challenge in front of himself to get to the place they both so desperately desire.