One of the most anticipated boxing matches of the year is finally upon us after Saul "Canelo" Alvarez and Erislandy Lara completed a successful weigh-in at the MGM Grand.
Kevin Iole of Yahoo reports that both fighters measured at the same weight:
You would think that this would make things even heading into Saturday's fight, but Alvarez previously admitted that he planned on putting on pounds as soon as the weigh-in was completed, according to Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times. However, Lara is not concerned:
I’m not worried about that. Every fighter I’ve fought has been heavier than me and I’ve been able to deal with them. Everyone goes into the ring how they feel comfortable. I have no problem with him blowing up to whatever he wants.
If Lara can use his mobility and foot speed, he should be able to handle the strength difference coming into the match. This will not be easy, though, as Canelo has enough technical ability to battle against anyone.
With as much talent as there is between these two fighters, this is expected to be an excellent showdown. Unsurprisingly, the weigh-in featured plenty of intensity as both sides wanted to show what they were made of.
The MGM Grand captured one of the more interesting moments during the staredown:
While the pre-fight trash talk is common for any bout these days, this upcoming match has the potential to be one of the best of the year. Dan Rafael of ESPN breaks down part of what makes this match so intriguing:
Not only are they considered the best, but they have contrasting styles and a simmering dislike for each other that has added some spice to the promotion.
Alvarez, the Mexican star who turns 24 next Friday, is the more aggressive fighter with a bigger punch. Lara, the 31-year-old former Cuban amateur star who defected and now lives in Houston, is a technically gifted southpaw from Cuba's amateur machine.
Both boxers have the talent to make this an excellent fight rather than just a show put on to boost pay-per-view sales.
That being said, this will not be a neutral crowd in Las Vegas. Another interesting takeaway at the weigh-in was the heavy presence of fans rooting for Alvarez, as noted by Rafael:
It is hard to judge the impact of fans in any sporting event, but you can be certain that the biased crowd will make a difference if the Mexican fighter needs a boost late in the match.
Either way, things will finally be decided in the ring after plenty of pre-fight hype from both sides. When this bout is over, fans and experts will know which fighter is the best.
Follow Rob Goldberg on Twitter for the latest breaking news and analysis.