On 24th January, spectators had expected another neck-and-neck slugfest between ring rivals Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado at the 1stBank Center, Colorado. The crowd witnessed another violent affair – but it was far from competitive this time round. Rios bludgeoned his foe relentlessly until Alvarado was retired after just the 3rd round.
Even hardcore boxing fans may have found it hard to watch Alvarado experience a nine minute pounding. Was this the same guy who’d battled Rios in their first two outings (back in October 2012 and March 2013)? The answer is of course yes – but why was he so flat in this trilogy-making performance?
Was Alvarado damaged goods courtesy of his battles with Juan Manuel Marquez and Ruslan Provodnikov (and let’s not forget those with Rios himself)? Or was it something else? Was Alvarado simply unprepared for Rios’s explosive start? Did Rios not allow Alvarado to find his rhythm and get a foot in the fight?
We’ll never know. One thing we do is that Rios couldn’t miss the target. He threw heavy, and in great volume. Rights, lefts, hooks – you name it, they landed. The uppercut was a particularly destructive shot, and it was the punch that finally dropped Alvarado in the 3rd round.
The Colorado native rose to his feet, but it was clear he’d need a miracle to stave off his all-offense opponent and find a way back into the fight. Rios could smell blood and was already hitting the high gears.
Shortly after Alvarado returned to his stool, his corner, doctor and officials gave their assessment. Alvarado was Retired, and rightly so. The fight had been boxing at its most brutal – this warrior had taken enough, and it was better he walk out the arena than be carried. (Rios vs Alvarado III Fight Highlights)
Rios vs Alvarado III Rattles Welterweight Scene
Following the contest, both fighters will be going in very different directions. It was a must win for both men, with the loser to take a serious hit to their ranking and mainstream appeal. This is likely the reason Rios blasted out his foe in such devastating fashion.
The win served as a major career reboot and, thanks to Rios’ brawler style, will lead to an exciting fight with a top 10 Welterweight opponent. If there’s one thing that’s certain in boxing, brawlers have never been short of demand. Most fans will be happy to see him challenge anyone not named Manny Pacquiao in his next bout.
As for Alvarado, the defeat will come as a severe blow, especially given it’s vicious nature. This was a one-sided assault, one which became his third consecutive loss – and second by stoppage. Ruslan Provodnikov, Juan Manuel Marquez, and finally Brandon Rios are to thank.
California’s Rios now jumps to 33 wins, 24 knockouts, 2 losses, 1 draw; he also picks up the vacant WBO International Welterweight strap. Alvarado’s record now falls to 34 wins, 23 knockouts, 4 losses.
What did you think of Rios vs Alvarado III? Was Alvarado too shop-worn to compete, or was he just underprepared and overwhelmed by Rios? Could he have boxed better and managed Rios’ mauling with the right strategy? And finally, what’s next for Rios at Welterweight?
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