Saul “Canelo” Alvarez proved he was boxing’s biggest superstar over the weekend by packing in a record-breaking 73,126 fans to see him stop previously undefeated titleholder Billy Joe Saunders at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on Saturday night.
Alvarez, 30, from Mexico, defeated Saunders, 31, from the United Kingdom, by eighth-round stoppage in a 168-pound title unification bout. It was the largest audience to witness a boxing match at an indoor stadium in U.S. history.
While Saunders used clever boxing to befuddle the Mexican early in the fight, by the eighth round Alvarez was landing clean punches with incredible force.
Even Alvarez knew he had landed the telling blow immediately upon landing it. In his post-fight interview after the bout, Alvarez said, “I broke his cheek.”
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Alvarez Won Important Fight vs. Saunders
It was an important unification bout for Alvarez. He entered it with the WBA and WBC super middleweight titles. He left the ring with both those and the belt previously wrapped around the waist of Saunders, the WBO title.
Alvarez needs just one more to become boxing’s undisputed champ at 168.
On top of that, Alvarez is considered by most pundits to be the top pound-for-pound boxer in the world. Moreover, he’s the sport’s biggest superstar of the era, at least this side of Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao, the two preeminent fighters of the previous period.
But now is Canelo’s time, and the four-division world champion continued his march toward Boxing’s Hall of Fame by dispatching Saunders in violent fashion.
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‘Jake Paul Next’ and Other Reactions to Canelo vs. Saunders
Twitter was ready to react to the big boxing fight in Texas, and Heavy compiled the best of the reactions here for you to enjoy.
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani suggested Alvarez could fight YouTuber Jake Paul next. If that bothers you, consider that the famed combat sports journalist was trying his hand at comedy. He posted, “Naturally, Canelo vs. Jake Paul next, right? JUST KIDDING! RELAX!”
Just don’t tell Paul that last part. The 3-0 celebrity boxer with millions of fans across various social media platforms absolutely believes he’ll be able to share the ring with Alvarez someday soon. He also was brave enough to snatch the hat right off of Mayweather’s head earlier this week in a viral video alteration.
Still, Bloody Elbow’s Stephanie Hayes hopes to see Paul try the same thing with Alvarez someday. She posted, “Only if Jake pulls the same promotional stunt. Pretty sure Canelo would make him eat the hat.”
Also representing the YouTube boxing crowd, KSI posted his thoughts about Alvarez. He said, “Canelo is too good man. What a boxer”.
Pacquiao was watching Alvarez do his thing, he offered his congratulations. Pacquiao posted, “And still… congrats Canelo!”.
Former UFC champ and current PFL star Anthony Pettis was also enjoying the fight. He just wants to know one thing about Alvarez. He posted, “Who’s next for @Canelo?”.
According to Alvarez after the fight, that’s likely to be Caleb Plant. Alvarez holds three of the four belts offered by boxing’s four major sanctioning organizations. Plant has the IBF belt.
Apparently, Plant was rooting for Saunders to win.
Regardless, Alvarez won his fight and set up the showdown for undisputed status.
More Reactions to Canelo vs. Saunders
You can see more reactions from boxing champ Claressa Shields, NBA star Karl-Anthony Towns, Hall of Fame boxing trainer Teddy Atlas and more below.
And you can catch live reactions to Canelo’s TKO win over Saunders on “Real Talk with Kelsey and Rachel” below.
YouTube: Real Talk with Kelsey and Rachel