For a fighter who is just 5-foot-8 and made his pro debut at 140 pounds, one would think there is a limit to how high he can eventually rise in weight and still be effective. Luckily, for pound-for-pound king Canelo Alvarez, he doesn't believe in limitations of any kind.
Fresh off a 2021 fighter of the year campaign in which he became the first undisputed champion in super middleweight history, Alvarez (57-1-2, 39 KOs) will move back up to 175 pounds on Saturday to challenge WBA light heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs) inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas (DAZN PPV, 8 p.m. ET -- subscribe now).
Three years removed from his last light heavyweight fight, when he knocked out Sergey Kovalev to claim the WBC title before immediately vacating it, the 31-year-old Alvarez will take on Bivol during the same week his promoter, Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Sport, revealed that Alvarez might be willing to challenge for the unified heavyweight title if Oleksandr Usyk, a former undisputed cruiserweight champion, was willing to accept a catchweight of 201 pounds.
The added heavyweight wrinkle comes just months after Alvarez was also rumored to be interested in challenging cruiserweight champion Ilunga Makabu.
"I like this kind of challenge [because] it makes me feel alive," Alvarez told CBS Sports on Wednesday. "That's why I am still in boxing because this kind of challenge makes me feel the adrenaline I need.
"For me, limits don't exist so I always want more. And you never know? [Fighting at heavyweight?] Maybe."
MMA Fighting has Canelo Alvarez vs. Dmitry Bivol live round-by-round updates of one of the top boxing fights of the year Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.
The main event will start around 11 p.m. ET. Check out our Canelo vs. Bivol results page to find out what happened on the undercard.
Alvarez (57-1-2), who is expected to make $15 million for the fight before PPV sales, will compete for the first time this year. He knocked out Caleb Plant in his past outing this past November.
Dimitry Bivol (19-0), who will make around $2 million for the fight before the PPV sales, will also enter the ring for the first time this year. Bivol will be defending his WBA light heavyweight title in the contest.
The DAZN PPV is priced at $59.99 for those who have active DAZN accounts, and $79.99 otherwise. If you’re looking for an alternative to watch without DAZN, PPV.com will have the fight, too, as will iNDEMAND’s traditional cable and satellite platforms.
LAS VEGAS -- Canelo Alvarez stood on the scale Friday outside T-Mobile Arena adorned by a wave of red-white-and-green flags as mariachis blared in full force.
For the first time in three years, Alvarez is set to compete in Las Vegas on Cinco de Mayo Weekend -- the date and site typically reserved for boxing's top star.
When Canelo defeated Daniel Jacobs here in May 2019, he retained his 160-pound championship via unanimous decision. Three years later, he weighed 174.4 pounds, the second-heaviest of his career, ahead of Saturday's light heavyweight title challenge vs. Russia's Dmitry Bivol (8 p.m. ET, DAZN pay-per-view).
Bivol, the champion and ESPN's No. 2 light heavyweight, weighed 174.6 pounds.
"My best weight is 168 ... but I feel really good at 175, too," said Alvarez, ESPN's No. 1 super middleweight. "I feel strong."
The ceremonial weigh-in on Friday afternoon was preceded by the morning's official weigh-in behind closed doors.
Alvarez (57-1-2, 39 KOs) will attempt to become a two-time light heavyweight champion following a November 2019 KO victory over Sergey Kovalev at 175 pounds. After that bout, Alvarez vacated his light heavyweight title to campaign at 168 pounds.
This time around, the 31-year-old Alvarez may keep the belt for a while. But if he beats Bivol, 31, his next fight is already set at 168 pounds: a defense of his undisputed super middleweight championship vs. Gennady Golovkin.
Golovkin and Alvarez have met twice already at 160 pounds -- a 2017 draw and a 2018 majority-decision win for Alvarez.
Canelo, ESPN's No. 1 pound-for-pound boxer, has expressed interest in a fight for the undisputed light heavyweight championship in 2023. A matchup with the winner of the June 18 three-belt unification between Artur Beterbiev and Joe Smith would accomplish the feat.
Alvarez must first turn back Bivol (19-0, 11 KOs), however, and he's a 5-1 favorite to do so, according to Caesars Sportsbook.
"I think I have enough experience and I have enough power, speed, boxing quality, to fight against the best," Bivol said. "... I don't think that I was avoided. Maybe not just interesting fight to make because I'm not known yet. I know it's business. Fine. OK. No problem. But now I got the fight."