Pound-for-pound boxing superstar, Canelo Alvarez, makes his fastest turnaround in the past decade TONIGHT (Sat., Feb. 27, 2021) when — just two months after unifying the WBA and WBC Super middleweight titles — he takes on mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim inside Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida.
MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE coverage of tonight’s main event below. The DAZN-streamed broadcast (watch it here) kicks off at 7 p.m. ET, with Alvarez and Yildirim likely to make the walk closer to 10 p.m. ET.
After a lengthy reign atop the Middleweight division and a couple of forays into the higher weight classes, Alvarez officially moved to 168 pounds full-time in Dec. 2020 with a one-sided decision over unbeaten Callum Smith. The 30-year-old Mexican superstar has his sights set on undisputed status, and to that end already has a clash with WBO champ Billy Joe Saunders tentatively scheduled for May 8, 2021.
First, though, he’ll have to deal with Yildirim. The Turkish bruiser hasn’t fought since Feb. 2019, losing to Anthony Dirrell by technical decision in a bid for the vacant WBC title. That kicked off a long, bizarre sequence of events that ultimately culminated with him retaining mandatory status. The co-feature sees former light flyweight world title challenger Abraham Rodriguez step up at the last minute to face McWilliams Arroyo for the interim WBC Flyweight title, while Heavyweight Olympic medalist Zhang Zhilei meets Jerry Forrest one fight prior.
Canelo Vs. Yildirim Quick Results:
Canelo Alvarez def. Avni Yildirim via retirement in round three
McWilliams Arroyo def. Abraham Rodriguez via technical knockout in round five
Zhang Zhilei vs. Jerry Forrest ends in majority draw
Diego Pacheco def. Rodolfo Gomez Jr. via unanimous decision
Marc Castro def. John Moraga via technical knockout in round two
Canelo Vs. Yildirim Round-By-Round Updates:
Round one: They meet in the center, tentatively circling. Canelo sending out left hands. 1-2 to the body. Warned for a low blow. Another right to the body. Yildirim tries to jab, takes more body shots. Halfway through. Left hook upstairs by Canelo. More body shots. Yildirim content to jab so far. Canelo digs another hook downstairs. Right cross as well. 10-9 Alvarez.
Round two: Hard uppercut from Canelo splits the guard. Left hand this time. Again, Yildirim just comes back with jabs. Left hooks to the body and head. Sneaky uppercut. Body blows. Another uppercut, liver shot. HAlfway through. 1-2 upstairs. More left hooks, right hands to the head. Yildirim offering nothing so far, gets blasted by a counter right. More body work. There’s a cross from Yildirim. Both land to the body. More Canelo combinations. 10-9, 20-18 Alvarez.
Round three: Canelo slams some hooks into his guard. Live shot, overhand right. Trading forehead-to-forehead. 1-2 and down goes Yildirim. He beats the count and is smiling when he does so. Canelo punishing the body when they resume, sends out combinations high and low. Counter left from Yildirim, blasted by another 1-2 halfway through the round. Alvarez staying patient. Uppercut splits the guard. They trade in the center. 3-2. Big body shots from Canelo, overhand right around the guard. 10-8, 30-26 Alvarez.
Yildirim doesn’t come out for the fourth.
Final result: Alvarez def. Yildirim via retirement
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