Undisputed Super-Middleweight Championship: Canelo Alveraz VS John Ryder
When: Saturday, May 6
Where: Akron Stadium – Guadalajara, Mexico
John Ryder is looking to spoil the party in Guadalajara and effectively end Canelo Alvarez’s career this Saturday. Alvarez (58-2) defends his super-middleweight belt haul against Englishman Ryder (32-5) at a pivotal moment in his career. The 32-year-old just hasn’t looked himself in his last two fights, a loss to Dmitry Bivol at light heavyweight and a decision win over GGG at super-middleweight. Ryder will be looking to capitalize on any mistakes here as Canelo fights for the first time in Mexico since a bout in Mexico City in 2011.
If Alvarez isn’t ready, then it will be obvious from the beginning. He is the heavy favorite to win here – as he should be – as many are seeing this as a tune-up bout for a rematch with Bivol down the line at 175 pounds. Winning the trilogy fight over GGG was huge for Alvarez, but the way he was outclassed by Bivol – his footwork, use of the jab, and discipline seemed to catch the Mexican fight off balance – leaves him with unfinished business with the Russian fighter.
Alvarez was tactically sound against GGG, but he wasn’t the showman and devastating puncher we have come to love. Most worrying, he looked tired in the later rounds, relying on his earlier work and the weird level of disinterest from his opponent to coast to the finish. We need to see more from Canelo if he is to look like a threat to Bivol down the line.
Ryder might be a massive underdog, but he has worked hard to get here. The Brit has won nine of his last 11 fights, and the two that he lost were decisions that could best be described as questionable. He will offer a threat if he can carry that momentum into the early rounds.
The problem for Ryder is that he doesn’t do anything special that will challenge Canelo. He doesn’t have extreme punching power or wildly fast hands. He is, instead, a grinder who wins his fights by will and determination over exceptional skill. That is exactly the type of boxer that Canelo thrives on picking apart, with his A++ boxing skills set to take over.
I can’t see an upset. I can see Ryder lasting through to the late rounds, as he has a solid chin. That durability will take him to a decent round number, but in the end, Canelo will come away looking dominant in victory in just the fight he needs.
The lean is for this to go over eight rounds. Ryder has been knocked out just once in 37 fights – we mentioned how durable he is – while if you move above middleweight, then Canelo’s average fight time is north of nine rounds. The judges will love Canelo’s work rate and counter punching, so he doesn’t need to go all out for a stoppage and leave himself vulnerable. That is why this fight will carry close to double-digit rounds at minimum before Canelo wins.