By: Dennis "dSource" Guillermo
Throw out strategies and game plans, Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado's only mission will be to take each other's heads off when they face on October 13th at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California. "It's going to be like Gatti vs. Ward, and Corrales vs. Castillo," Rios said, referring to two of boxing's most memorable slugfests.
It's just what the doctor prescribed for the fan-favorite Rios, who tasted criticisms for his controversial split-decision win over Richard Abril last April, and hit a snag in the form of an elbow injury last June, that sidelined him for a few weeks.
"Brandon is doing good. His elbow has healed. He has been training and working hard and is excited to get back in the ring," Rios' trainer Robert Garcia told this scribe.
The astute trainer, who will also be working as Filipino-American WBO and IBF super bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire, Jr.'s cornerman against Toshiaki Nishioka on the same night of Rios' showdown with Alvarado, played down criticisms regarding his pupil, stating how fickle boxing fans can be. "When Brandon beat (Anthony) Peterson and (Miguel) Acosta, everyone was saying all kinds of great things about him, then he had a difficult fight with Abril because of the style, and people are writing him off."
"Mike Alvarado is a warrior. It's going to be a great fight. We're going to give fans what they want. Nobody's taking a step back. It's going to be blood for blood. It's going to be a violent fight." -- Brandon Rios
There won't be any stylistic problems against Alvarado, who is as close to a mirror of a boxer as there can be. Both men come forward, bang, and take punches in order to issue out punishment of their own; Two Mexican warriors headed on a collision course.
"It's just going to be a good fight. I don't know what I need to worry about the most," Rios told The Knocrete Jungle. "I know he's probably doing his homework, we're doing out homework, but the only thing is, I don't think there's much to worry about because he's coming forward like me, and we both want to give the fans what they want," he added.
Rios is moving up to 140 for the first time, after his well-documented struggles making the 135 limit. "In my last two fights, I was just training to make the weight, I wasn't really training to fight. This time it's different, because I'm actually training and it's different.," Rios said. The Oxnard, California transplant is confident that he hill carry his weight at 140, and looks forward to fighting at his best, something he says he hasn't done in his last two fights due to miserable weight-cutting.
Both fighters are predicting a blood bath in the ring, and an early finish. Chances are, they are both right. And with Donaire also facing off against Nishioka as the show's headliner, can you say card doubleheader of the year?
Tickets for Donaire vs. Nishioka; Rios vs. Alvarado, are priced at $150, $75 and $35 and can be purchased online at AXS.com or by phone at 888-929-7849 as well as The Home Depot Center Box Office (open Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.). Suites are available by calling 1-877-604-8777. For discounts on groups of 10 or more, call 1-877-234-8425 or visitwww.aegtickets.com.
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