Oscar De La Hoya squared off with Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a junior middleweight title fight in May 2007 at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the same venue where Mayweather will tangle with Saul “Canelo” Alvarez on Sept. 14 in a junior middleweight title fight (on Showtime pay-per-view).
De La Hoya did very well in the first half of the fight, but he stopped using his jab and Mayweather emerged with a split-decision victory. De La Hoya believes that Alvarez will do what he and other great fighters of Mexican descent – namely Jose Luis Castillo, Juan Manuel Marquez and Chicanito Hernandez – could not do, defeat Mayweather.
“For one thing, youth is on his side,” De La Hoya said of Alvarez, who is just 23; Mayweather is 36. “But the real advantage will be the intelligence. People will also be surprised with his speed.”
Alvarez said he first began following Mayweather fights in 2001 and 2002 when he fought Diego Corrales and Castillo, respectively. He apparently watched De La Hoya-Mayweather with great interest.
“Oscar, of course,” he said, when asked for whom he was rooting. What else was he going to say? De La Hoya’s his boss.
Mayweather is 44-0 with 46 knockouts. Alvarez is 42-0-1 with 30 knockouts.