Tomorrow Atlantic City's Shamone “The Truth” Alvarez (21-3, 12KO's) travels across the border, as he looks to get back into the win column when he takes on Canada's WBA #8 rated welterweight, Antoni Decarie (24-1, 7KO's) at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada. The bout, scheduled for ten rounds, will headline this week's edition of ESPN's “Friday Night Fights.” Alvarez-Decarie marks the return of Groupe Yvon Michel's highly regarded FAST AND FURIOUS boxing series, and is presented by the Casino de Montreal in collaboration with Videotron, and Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing
The last time anyone saw Alvarez on ESPN was back in March of 2009 at the Mohegan Sun, when he went to war for twelve rounds with hometown favorite Delvin Rodriguez, ultimately losing a razor thin decision and in the process missing out, once again, on his shot at the IBF Welterweight Championship. The bout against Rodriguez was an official IBF Welterweight Title Eliminator, the same Eliminator he lost in two years prior, to eventual IBF Champion, Joshua Clottey.
Alvarez road through the paid ranks has been somewhat of a roller coaster ride. After an impressive amateur career, which saw him win numerous state and regional titles, Alvarez turned pro in July of 2002, scoring a first round knockout over Steve Evans. Over the next five years, Alvarez would improve his record to an impressive 19-0, 11KO's, picking up the WBO NABO Welterweight Title along the way and steadily moving up the welterweight world rankings as well as beginning to gain national attention and exposure fighting on ESPN and Showtime.
Then came his shot at his first world title opportunity, all he needed to do was get by Joshua Clottey. Alvarez, was competitive, and fought a tough fight, but in the end, it wasn't enough, something Alvarez blaims on his lack of experience to that point in big fights. Clottey would go on to challenge for and win the IBF Championship, just a year later, while Alvarez was forced to sit inactive and watch from the sidelines.
Finally just a little over a year after the Clottey fight, and a switch of promoters to Star Boxing, Alvarez got his career back on track, winning a ten round decision over former U.S. Olympian Terrance Cauthen. Then came the aforementioned bout with Rodriguez, one that was very debatable, but one that the humble Alvarez blaims on no one but himself.
“I let the fight be too close. I should have never let it get as close as it was. If I stuck to my game plan, I would have easily walked out of there that night as the winner, but hey, that's boxing. It was a learning experience for me. I know if I ever get on that stage again, what I can and can't do if I want to come out on top. It is never a good idea to leave it up to the judges hands, especially in someone's hometown, and I have no intentions of doing that on Friday night.”
Alvarez once again bounced back from his defeat against Rodriguez, when he took on heavy-handed Alexis Camacho in March of 2010. Alvarez controlled the bout against Camacho before scoring a brutal one punch knockout in the 7th round of their scheduled ten rounder.
In his most recent outing, Alvarez was upset by Ghana's Ayi Bruce, losing another close decision, one that Alvarez says was very hard to swallow.
“The loss to Bruce was tough for me, because there is no way that he even belongs in the same ring as me. I take nothing away from the kid, he is tough, but he is just nowhere near on my skill level. I had an off night and that's all it is, that was not the Shamone Alvarez I, or everyone else knows in that ring that night.”
Though he has three losses on his record, Alvarez has by no means ever been “beat up” in the ring. Each of his losses has been close, and he has been highly competitive in. Each time in his career Alvarez has had his back to the ropes, he has be able to bounce back, something Alvarez guarantees will once again happen this Friday.
“I know I am going to bounce back just like I have in the past. The important thing is not how you lose, but how you bounce back, and that's where my mind is right now. Everyone is going to see the real Shamone Alvarez in the ring this Friday. I know I am one of the top welterweights in the world, and for those who don't believe it, make sure to tune in.”
Alvarez-Decarie is promoted by Groupe Yvon Michel in association with Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing and is presented by Casino de Montreal in collaboration with Videotron. ESPN2 will begin live coverage at 9PM ET.