SAN ANTONIO – Canelo Alvarez obviously is a much bigger star, but Callum Smith towered over him during their socially distanced stare-down Friday morning at the Grand Hyatt hotel.
Smith stands 6-feet-3, seven inches taller than the stout Alvarez. They weighed almost the same amount, though, when they stepped on the Texas Combative Sports Program’s scale for their 12-round, 168-pound title fight Saturday night at Alamodome.
The 30-year-old Smith, of Liverpool, England, officially weighed exactly 168 pounds, as did Alvarez, who is also 30.
Alvarez informed BoxingScene.com on Thursday that he expects to weigh 174 or 175 pounds once he enters the ring to meet Smith. The four-division champion anticipates Smith will out-weigh him by seven or eight pounds.
“I feel a little bit of an advantage because he drops weight in order to hit weight, and then he goes up,” Alvarez told BoxingScene.com. “I feel really well. I feel I have the capacity to fight with these types of fighters.”
Alvarez (53-1-2, 36 KOs), of Guadalajara, Mexico, is listed by most sports books as at least a 5-1 favorite to beat Smith (27-0, 19 KOs), the WBA “super” 168-pound champion. They’ll also fight for the vacant WBC super middleweight crown.
The winner must make a mandated defense against Turkey’s Avni Yildirim (21-2, 12 KOs) within 90 days of Saturday night, or he’ll be stripped of that WBC belt.
Versus Smith, Alvarez will attempt to legitimize himself as a super middleweight champion.
He won the WBA world 168-pound title when he stopped England’s Rocky Fielding (28-2, 16 KOs) in the third round of their December 2018 bout at Madison Square Garden in New York. Smith already was the WBA’s true “super” champion at that time, and he had stopped Fielding in the first round three years earlier at Echo Arena in Liverpool.
Alvarez and Smith will headline an eight-bout card DAZN will stream live in more than 200 countries, including the United States and England. DAZN costs $19.99 per month or $99.99 for an annual subscription.
The final five fights on the Alvarez-Smith card also will be available to purchase through traditional pay-per-view providers in the U.S. It’ll cost $69.99 to watch it on pay-per-view, which includes a four-month subscription to DAZN (January through April).
The official weights for the final four bouts on the seven-fight Alvarez-Smith undercard are listed below.
Frank Sanchez (16-0, 12 KOs), Guantanamo, Cuba, 229 pounds vs. Julian Fernandez (14-2, 11 KOs), Tijuana, Mexico, 209.2 pounds, 10 rounds, heavyweights.
Raymond Ford (7-0, 3 KOs), Camden, New Jersey, 128.6 pounds vs. Juan Antonio Lopez (15-7, 6 KOs), Dallas, 129.2 pounds, 6 rounds, junior lightweights.
Austin Williams (6-0, 5 KOs), Houston, 159.4 pounds vs. Isiah Jones (9-3, 3 KOs), Detroit, 157 pounds, 6 rounds, middleweights.
Marc Castro (pro debut), Fresno, California, 130.6 pounds vs. Luis Javier Valdez (7-5-1, 2 KOs), Tijuana, Mexico, 128.8 pounds, 4 rounds, junior lightweights.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.