Mike Alvarado vs Brandon Rios Preview Jan 24th
Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios will be battling it out for the third time when the two welterweights meet up in Broomfield, Colorado this Saturday, January 24th. The pair of former champions each has a win against each other and each of them handed their opponent their first career loss as a pro. This 12-round tilt can be seen live on HBO in the U.S. and Canada, while UK fans can catch the action on BoxNation.
This rubber match is crucial for these fighters since both of them are going into it on a bit of a career slide. Rios has been beaten in two of his last three contests and Alvarado has been on the losing end of three of his past four outings. Neither man can really afford another loss on his record if he hopes to get another title shot or a few more big-money fights. The fans are in for a treat though since the first two meetings between Alvarado and Rios were barnburners.
The 34-year-old Alvarado will be climbing into the ring with a record of 34-3 with 23 Kos while the 28-year-old Rios is 32-3-1 and also has 23 Kos to his name. Alvarado stands 5-feet-9-inches tall which gives him an inch height advantage and he also has a 1.5-inch reach edge with his 69.5-inch wingspan. Alvarado will also have the hometown advantage since he hails from Denver, Colorado with Rios coming from Oxnard, California. Their pro experience is relatively the same with Alvarado having 204 pro rounds under his belt compared to 193 by Rios.
Alvarado is six years older though and apart from the two slugfests against Rios he’s also been in bruising fights and losses to Ruslan Provodnikov and Juan Manuel Marquez. This means he might not have too much left in the tank even though he has all the heart and determination in the world. Alvarado and Rios first met in October of 2012 with Rios stopping Alvarado in seven rounds in a classic. The second meeting was held in March of 2013 with Alvarado avenging his lost via a 12-round unanimous decision in another action-packed encounter.
Rios lost his second fight in succession when he dropped another unanimous decision, this time to Manny Pacquiao eight months later. Rios then failed his post-fight drug test and was handed a six-month ban. Alvarado used his boxing skills to beat Rios and it might be a good idea if he attempts to do this same again on Saturday. Although he has a solid chin it’s simply been tested and taken too much punishment over the past few years. He needs to control the distance and make sure that he doesn’t allow Rios to dictate the pace as the aggressor.
Both guys are known as brawlers, but they do have good boxing skills. Rios is effective when he works his way on the inside, but sooner or later his natural instinct takes over and most of his bouts turn into slugfests. Alvarado needs to try to stay away from a toe-to-toe fight and use his legs to move around the ring while controlling the angles and range, the same way Pacquiao did against Rios. He also needs to make sure he doesn’t lean in and get nailed by Rios’ uppercuts. Rios will attempt to entice Alvarado into a brawl by moving forward at all times and taking two or three shots to and one of his own if he has to.
The key to this fight is the distance. If Rios can get inside then he has the advantage and if Alvarado can keep him to the outside then he will have the edge. Sooner or later though these two are going to just stand there and trade power shots. Since Alvarado has absorbed a lot of punishment over his past four contests and he’s now 34 this will favour Rios. Look for Rios to eventually stop Alvarado in the second half of the fight in another thriller.
Sportsbook 5dimes.eu has the latest odds on all of the big fights. The odds of a Rios victory are listed at -140 while an Alvarado win is listed at +120. Visit 5Dimes.eu to see up to date odds and to bet on this fight. You should also check out our recent boxing betting predictions to see how we’ve done.