Mexican superstar Canelo Alvarez (44-1-1, 31 KOs) hosted a media workout at the House of Boxing in San Diego in advance of his fight against Texas titan James “Mandingo Warrior” Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs) on May 9 at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas and telecast live on HBO World Championship Boxing ®.
Oscar De La Hoya, President and Founder of Golden Boy Promotions, Canelo Alvarez’ manager and co-trainer, Chepo Reynoso and head trainer Eddy Reynoso were all on hand for Monday’s media day.
Below is what Team Canelo had to say:
Canelo Alvarez, Former WBC and WBA Super Welterweight World Champion:
“I feel very happy. I am ready to fight tomorrow if needed. I feel excited that the fight is around the corner.
“Kirkland’s style will complement mine, he is a fighter that likes to come forward and May 9 will bring a great fight for all the fans.
“We have the right strategy to beat James Kirkland. I have been sparring with southpaws to be prepared. Kirkland is a strong puncher, but I am also a strong fighter. On fight night I plan to hit hard but I also plan to fight an intelligent fight.
“I am very honored to have the first boxing event at Minute Maid Park, and I promise fans will not be disappointed. I train very hard to please all my fans.
“I like to challenge myself, and I am not afraid to fight southpaws. I want to feel satisfied with myself, and I also want to put on fights that the people want to watch.
“House of Boxing has always supported me, and I am grateful to Carlos Barragan (owner of House of Boxing) for supporting my career.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA, President and Founder of Golden Boy Promotions:
“This is Canelo mania. This is what people are waiting for. Canelo vs. Kirkland is going to be exciting. People are excited to watch him train and take pictures of him.
“This is a sure knockout type of fight. Whether Kirkland knocks out Canelo or Canelo knocks out Kirkland, it’s going to be one of those fights. Styles make fights. We are going to see a good clash. It’s going to be a good fight.
“We are taking boxing to venues that are not the norm. We are going to have a stadium where we can open or close the roof, depending on the weather. It’s going to be awesome. For the millions that will be watching live on HBO, it’s going to be a special treat. HBO is going to give the fans watching live aerial views of the stadium during the fight. It’s going to be pretty cool.”
Chepo Reynoso, Manager and Trainer of Canelo Alvarez:
“Kirkland is a complicated fighter; he is a southpaw, a hard hitter and throws a lot of punches. He is not afraid to brawl and looks to fight. That will help us with Canelo plan and move forward in his training.
“Canelo is a dangerous fighter because he is smart fighter. He is strong and shows great discipline. He learns every day and uses it in the ring.
“On May 9 fans will see a fast, strong, exciting and intelligent fighter in the ring. He will knockout James Kirkland and he will come out with his hand held up high and say: ‘Viva Mexico!’
“We are in the final stages of sparring. To date, he has done 125 rounds of sparring with five different partners, all southpaws with similar fighting styles to James. By Friday we hope to complete a total of 155 rounds of sparring.
“We are all very happy that Canelo’s fight week is on Cinco de May week; the holiday belongs to the Mexicans! Viva Mexico.”
Eddy Reynoso, Head Trainer of Canelo Alvarez:
“He is strong and we are working on his speed these last two weeks to make sure he is ready for James Kirkland.
“We are working like normal, making sure he focuses on his defense. Defense will be very important on May 9, Kirkland is a fighter that is not afraid to come out looking for a knockout and that is something we feel Canelo is prepared for.
“I think Canelo is prepared to James’ style. We have done a great job to prepare him for a left-handed fighter. Come fight night, Canelo will show the world that he is not afraid to fight anyone.”
Tickets priced at $350, $150, $100, $50, $25 and $10, plus applicable fees and service charges, are available for purchase at Astros.com/boxing, the Minute Maid Park Box Office (Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.) all Ticketmaster outlets, by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000, online at www.ticketmaster.com. There is a 19-ticket limit per household.
Canelo Alvarez vs. James Kirkland is a 12-round super welterweight bout presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Canelo Promotions, SMS Promotions and Leija*Battah Promotions. The fight will take place Saturday, May 9 at Minute Maid Park in Houston Texas and is sponsored by Corona Extra, Mexico – Live it to Believe it!, Fred Loya Insurance and O’Reilly Auto Parts. Doors open at 11:00 a.m. CT and first bout starts at 11:10 a.m. CT, the HBO World Championship Boxing telecast begins at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.
An all-new edition of 24/7 Alvarez/Kirkland debuts Tuesday, May 5 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO.
For more information, visit www.goldenboypromotions.com, www.canelopromotions.com.mx, www.smsboxing.com, www.hbo.com/boxing and www.astros.com/boxing, follow on Twitter at @GoldenBoyBoxing, @SMS_Boxing, @HBOBoxing, @Canelo, @KOKirkland, @Astros @LeijaBattahPR become a fan on Facebook at Golden Boy Facebook Page, https://www.facebook.com/SMSBoxing, www.facebook.com/HBOBoxing or www.facebook.com/astros and visit us on Instagram @GoldenBoyBoxing, @smsboxing and @HBOboxing, @Canelopower, @Kirklandsworld. Follow the conversation using #CaneloKirkland.