Robert Garcia on Saul Alvarez’s desire to face Mayweather and the recent setbacks of Nonito Donaire and Brandon Rios

Saul Alvarez prior to his fight with Austin Trout this past weekend in San Antonio, TX (Photo: Naoki Fukuda)

3_grittyBONUS  SAUL coverage

By Chris Robinson

With his entertaining unanimous decision victory over Austin Trout this past Saturday night, Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez is presently the man of the hour.

Dropping his cagey southpaw foe in the seventh round and landing sharp punches throughout, Alvarez came away with a unanimous decision victory over Trout inside of the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas in a Showtime-televised clash that saw his stock rise even further.

And while the scorecards reading 118-109, 116-111, and 115-112 didn’t do justice to highlight just how competitive the match really was, there’s no denying the star appeal that the 22-year old Alvarez has as the boxing world eyes his next move.

Catching up with some boxing insiders after the unification bout, I got two-time Trainer of the Year Robert Garcia’s opinion on Canelo’s performance and what his future holds, including a possible match with Floyd Mayweather down the road.

As our conversation continued, I also received some feedback from Garcia on the setbacks of two of his star fighters, Nonito Donaire and Brandon Rios.

Donaire lost a unanimous decision to Guillermo Rigondeaux on April 13th after failing to figure the stylish Cuban out while Rios too dropped a points verdict to Mike Alvarado two weeks prior in a highly-anticipated Vegas rematch.

This is what Garcia had to share…

Canelo’s victory…
“It was a good fight. It was probably closer than what the judges had, but I think Canelo won. But maybe a little bit closer than what the judges had it. The judges had it way too off I think. But it was still a good fight.”

Not a fan of the open scoring system used in the fight, as judges’ scores were revealed after eight rounds of action…
“I don’t like that. Because Canelo didn’t have to take chances anymore because he knew he was way ahead. But all three judges had him way ahead and he just had to continue fighting the way he was fighting with not taking any chances, because he knows he’s ahead. I would prefer the scores not being revealed like that, because that way maybe Canelo would try a little bit. Because he did hurt him and drop him one time, even before the scores were even mentioned. So, if he didn’t know, maybe he thought the fight was closer and maybe would have pressured him a little bit more and maybe he would have ended up hurting him and knocking him out. But, since he knew he was way ahead. He was more on the safe side.”

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Interested in Floyd Mayweather’s May 4th assignment with Robert Guerrero…
“I think it will be an interesting fight to watch, because Guerrero fights with no respect and no fear, which I think he will. It should be a fight that will be interesting. Because, the way he beat Andre Berto, [he] could do the same with Mayweather. I’m not saying he beats Mayweather, I think Mayweather still wins. But it will be interesting.”

Why Alvarez needs a few more challenges before meeting Floyd…
“He does give him a good challenge but I say maybe two or three more fights for Alvarez. I think Alvarez needs a couple more fights before he even faces Mayweather.”

Reflecting on Nonito Donaire’s loss to Rigondeaux…
“You know what? You can’t be disappointed. Donaire just couldn’t catch him. Rigondeaux a good fight; stayed smart and did what he had to do. We tried, but it was just Rigo’s night and you can’t take anything away from him. We hate to lose, of course, but sometimes a lot of fighters need a loss to learn from their mistakes and learn from their training camps. Sometimes it’s better for them. In this case with Donaire, it’s going to make him stronger.”

Why he would prefer for Donaire to relocate his camps from San Carlos, Calif. to his home base in Oxnard…
“Definitely. It’s something that I’ve talked over with [Donaire’s manager] Cameron Dunkin hundreds of times. We just haven’t been able to do it where Donaire would be here in Oxnard. It would make it so much easier for me, for Cameron, for himself. He’s just so used to training in Northern California, and the guys there, Brian and [Michael] Bazzel, they do a great job and they mean well. They work hard, they do. But sometimes, me being away and not being there makes a big difference too. It would be so much different if Nonito trained here in Oxnard, but some fighters are different. It’s just something we might not ever be able to convince him to do and we might have to make a few decisions if that doesn’t happen.”

Brandon Rios dropping a decision to Mike Alvarado in their rematch at the Mandalay Bay on March 30th…
“I know this fight was very close, but I think, like Brandon said, if he would have got maybe a draw. I honestly saw the fight and saw Brandon pressuring and landing less punches but the best punches in the fight. There were a few rounds that were very questionable, that could have gone either way. And the judges gave them to Alvarado. There were probably two or three rounds I would say Brandon won, but they went to Alvarado, but that’s just the way it is. Some judges take the fighter that moves around and throws more punches, and other judges take the fighter that is the aggressor. In this case, we didn’t get those judges. Those rounds were given to Alvarado, but we don’t blame them. It was a very close fight.”

Taking the loss and eyeing Brandon’s next move…
“We were actually not mad at the decision. We’re ok. We’ll take the loss and it’s going to make Brandon stronger and better for the next fight. Brandon didn’t lose anything. He’s still in line to fight big fights. Pacquiao, Marquez, all those names. He’s still in line for a third fight against Alvarado. We’re still in great position with Brandon. He didn’t lose much. There are a few things we might be able to correct for a third fight. But I still think the fight could have gone either way. I’m not mad at the judges either, they did their job.”

PLEASE CHECK OUT more exclusive Saul Alvarez-Austin Trout post-fight coverage below

Saul Alvarez speaks on silencing his critics and being ready for Mayweather [Post-fight presser]

‘Canelo’s the man’ – Sam Watson pays respect to Saul Alvarez and eyes Austin Trout’s return

Oscar De La Hoya disses Rigondeaux vs. Donaire and wants Omar Figueroa vs. Juan Diaz in 2013

Robert Guerrero claims he would love a fight with Saul Alvarez after facing Mayweather

Chris Robinson can be reached at Trimond@aol.com

 

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