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Mike Alvarado Surprised Marquez Fight Came His Way

BY Kelsey McCarson ON May 14, 2014
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The opportunity Mike Alvarado has been graced with on Saturday night isn't one he expected to receive.

Alvarado told TSS he was surprised he got the nod to fight one of boxing’s elite superstars, Juan Manuel Marquez, after receiving a drubbing from Ruslan Provodnikov last year in front of his hometown crowd in Denver, Colorado.

“I thought I was going to have to fight another step up fight to prove I could get to a level like this. I was definitely surprised, but I’m happy about it. I’m blessed. I’m going with it and doing the best I can to show I belong on this level.”

Alvarado has been a mixed bag as he’s moved up the ladder from prospect to contender. He lost a war with Brandon Rios in 2012 in seven rounds before redeeming himself against the same fighter in 2013 by unanimous decision. But in October 2013, Alvarado was shellacked by Provodnikov and suffered a Round 10 TKO loss. Alvarado said he was overconfident against Provodnikov, and that he learned a valuable lesson from the loss. He said he paid too much attention to how Provodnikov fared against a common opponent, Mauricio Herrera.

“He fought and lost to one of the same guys I beat. He lost to a guy I destroyed.”

Herrera defeated Provodnikov by unanimous decision in January 2011. Alvarado defeated the same fighter by unanimous decision the very next year. Alvarado says he wasn’t putting in work in the gym like he should have been in recent fights, and that his approach has changed for Marquez.

“In training, I’m putting a lot more into it. In my last two fights, I didn’t really have as much fire. I didn’t really have as much hunger as I do now. It means a lot more to me right now.”

Alvarado said his life outside the ring was as good as it’s been in recent history. He said he now has the humility he needs as a fighter and the support he needs as a man to be successful in the sport he loves. “It means a lot more to me right now. At this point in my life and in my career, it’s just deep. I’m motivated. I’m going to do all I absolutely can to win the fight.”

Regardless of what happens on fight night, Alvarado said he’s proud of his effort. He said this was the biggest fight of his career and there was a tinge of angst in his voice that told me he meant it.

“This time, at the end of the day, I’ll at least know I gave it my all. I did the best I could in training and everything else.”

Alvarado said he will attack Marquez with a varied approach, something he’s honed as he’s moved through his career. “I was a pressure fighter before I implemented my boxing tactics. I gained that experience to approach this kind of fight.”

Alvarado said a win over Marquez would be the biggest thing to ever happen in his career, and he said he expected to be the bigger, stronger man on fight night. Moreover, he said he was glad to have the opportunity to retire a Mexican legend like Marquez, who is age 40, but still one of the elite fighters in the game.

“We’ll see what happens. I’m just excited to be in there. Preparation is going good. I’m ready to put it to the test.”

Mike Alvarado will face Juan Manuel Marquez on Saturday, May 17, at the Forum in Inglewood, California. The bout will air live on HBO beginning at 10:15 p.m. ET. Kelsey McCarson contributes regularly to The Sweet Science, Boxing Channel and Bleacher Report.

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Comment on this article

Carmine Cas says:

I'm not, Top Rank is low on talent these days; especially at 140, 147

The Commish says:

True, Carmine. Plus TR didn't know what to do next with JMM. Leave it to Bruce Trampler, TR's Hall-of-Fame matchmaker to come up with the perfect match for both JMM & Mike Alvarado.

It should be nothing less than an action fight.

-Randy G.

oubobcat says:

I'm not, Top Rank is low on talent these days; especially at 140, 147


Top Rank is definitely very low on talent nowadays so not all surprised this fight was made. So low on talent as a matter of fact, I will already predict what is next for both men win lose or draw. Marquez, unless he is completely dominated or knocked out, gets Pacquiao. Even with a loss as long as he is not convincingly beaten, Marquez will get the Pacquaio bout. Pacquiao needs a side B to draw in a big PPV and well there is no bigger side B available for him than Marquez.

As for Alvarado, he will get Tim Bradley. This almost reminds me of a college football game. In order to get the fight (and payday) he most desires, Alvarado must not only win but do so in a dominating and impressive matter.

El Dude says:

Mike Alvarado had it tough vs Ruslan Provodnikov but not even Juan Manuel Marquez wanted a piece of him. Mike fought hard and gave all that he could in his last fight vs the Siberian Rocky but it was brutal and Mike just couldn't go any further. Mike has the support of the fans and he should keep his head up high for we all witness how the life of Mike was dissipating under the wrath of the kid who assaults in the ring with the blessing of his family. There is a saying that says to quit while your ahead but in the hands of Ruslan its more like "Quit before you are Dead". Alvarado is not out of the clear yet for he is in deep water now with a legend and a shark of an opponent that is head hunting and circling the Mile High Kid but the question is, will Mike paddle his way out or will he go swimming with the fishes?
El Dude Boxing Commentaries.

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