In one of the most-anticipated events on the action-packed HBO Boxing calendar, one of the brightest stars in the sport meets one of his fiercest challenges when Canelo Alvarez faces James Kirkland, with a co-feature of Humberto Soto vs. Frankie Gomez, this Saturday at 9pm from Minute Maid Park in Houston.
Canelo Alvarez (44-1-1, 31 KOs) of Jalisco, Mexico and James Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs) of Austin, Tex. will compete in a scheduled 12-round super welterweight fight. Both men are known for an aggressive, come-forward style, which should produce an all-action affair.
Following an impressive 2014 campaign that included victories over fierce brawler Alfredo Angulo and crafty southpaw Erislandy Lara, Alvarez, 24, makes his 2015 debut looking for another dominant performance in his return to Texas, where a fervent fan base will provide a hometown feel for the Mexican slugger.
With just two fights over the last three years, including a stunning knockout of Glen Tapia in 2013, Kirkland, 31, returns rested and primed for battle. The Texas native boasts remarkable knockout power, having not allowed any opponent to reach the final bell since 2007. The winner will be in line for a super welterweight title fight later this year.
A scheduled ten-round super lightweight fight opens the evening, with seasoned veteran Humberto Soto (65-8-2, 35 KOs) squaring off against undefeated Frankie Gomez (18-0, 13 KOs). Soto, 34, is a former three-division champion coming off a decisive victory last September over John Molina, Jr., while unbeaten prospect Gomez, 23, continues to rise in the ranks.
Leading off the telecast will be the replay of the May 2nd blockbuster pay-per-view event from Las Vegas in which Floyd Mayweather met Manny Pacquiao in a much anticipated welterweight unification title bout.