5. Canelo Triumphs Over Miguel Cotto
Hands down this is the biggest achievement of Canelo’s career thus far. Cotto was riding a career resurgence. With Freddie Roach in Cotto’s corner he cruised to three consecutive knockout victories, including Sergio Martinez. Alvarez was still looking to prove he could play with the A-Side (e.g., Mayweather, Pacquiao and Cotto). While the fight was closer than reflected on the score-cards and the decision disputed by some, Alvarez clearly won the bout. Cotto did connect, but his punches did not daunt Canelo. Conversely, when Canelo connected, his punches were clearly stronger and visibly moved Cotto resulting in a decision for Alvarez and the biggest win of his career to date. More importantly he demonstrated championship poise through the bout, never daunted by the magnitude of the event or the hall of famer that was in front of him.
6. Canelo Sues & Leaves Golden Boy and DAZN.
In October of 2018 Canelo entered into what at the time was the richest deal in sports history. A five year, 11-fight deal that will pay the boxer at least $365 million. At the time is seemed a win-win for all. Canelo was earning more than ever, his promoter Golden Boy received a cash infusion and the upstart sports streaming network had a bonafide star to launch their streaming service. Yet, things soured quickly. First, there was th level of opposition, DAZN allegedly wanted higher profile fights, agains the likes of Triple G, even an Oscar de la Hoya bout was mentioned. Then there was the pandemic, crippled by lack of a live sports gate, DAZN allegedly sought to renegotiate the deal. Canelo wasn’t having it. Suing the platform and Golden Boy. The case eventually settled, but it was bold move and saw the star fight outside the ring for what he thought was right. Even his former promoter Golden Boy recognized that the big stars eventually leave the stable if they are to rise to the next level. De La Hoya recounting how he did just that with Top Rank. Canelo is now a free agent, providing his services to the highest bidder. A move pioneered by Sugar Ray Leonard, perfected by Floyd Mayweather and currently followed by the likes of Mikey Garcia and now Canelo.
7. Canelo Negotiates His Brother’s Kidnapping Release in the Midst of His Madison Square Garden Debut
The sport of professional boxing at its highest levels requires undivided attention. Lose your focus and it can quite literally cost you your life. Never mind, entering the first fight of then history making deal, at a venue considered the Mecca of Boxing.
Yet, when family calls and there life is on the line, it’s understandable to have your focus diverted. This is precisely what Canelo encountered back in winter of 2018. During the first fight against Rocky Fielding, when he was set to debut at Madison Square Garden, Canelo was also in the midst of negotiating his brother’s release from kidnappers. Assailants who saught to cash in on the famous family of their hostage. It unfortunately is not uncommon in his native Mexico. Dealing with that in and of itself would break down any person, to do it, while preparing for a monumentous moment in your career and to do both successfully – that simply demonstrates that Canelo is in fact the real deal.