Milehigh Mike is money in the rematch

Posted: March 30, 2013 in BOXING
Tags: , , , , , , ,
Mike Alvarado is catching plenty of value at +350 in his Saturday night bout against Brandon Rios, who won the first match in October of last year.

Mike Alvarado is catching plenty of value at +350 in his Saturday night bout against Brandon Rios, who won the first match in October of last year. PHOTO: W.G. Ramirez

LAS VEGAS — Mike Alvarado will defeat Brandon Rios in their rematch of last year’s epic battle in October.

In their Oct. 13 bout last year, judges Max Deluca and Zach Young had the fight scored even, 57-57, while judge James Jen Kin had it 58-56 for Rios, whose crushing right hand changed the complexion of a fight that had gone back and forth the entire bout. Rios’ onslaught was relentless enough for referee Pat Russell to step in and stop the fight at 1 minute, 57 seconds of the seventh round.

Here we are less than six months later and the two will step in the ring at approximately 8 p.m. inside the Mandalay Bay Events Center, and yes, I’m taking the underdog to be victorious in the second of what could end being another great trilogy in boxing.

I’ve been to just about every media event, spoken with both fighters, chatted it up with media sorts and Top Rank and HBO executives. And let me be clear – not one other person I’ve spoken to is picking Alvarado to win this fight.

Everyone I’ve shared conversation with says Rios wins again.

Personally, I say be careful where you’re laying your money tonight. Of course, as close as the first fight was, it’s only smart to have something on an underdog as big as Alvarado. Rios was installed as high as 5-to-1, and has settled back at -450 at most places offshore and in Las Vegas. Alvarado is bringing back a price of +350.

But tossing the numbers out to just picking a winner, and all due respect to Rios, something tells me Alvarado is taking this fight a little more serious. I know Rios is a jovial and nonchalant guy who likes to joke and have fun, but there comes a time when you have to focus in on what is sure to be your toughest fight.

Just because it’s the same opponent, doesn’t mean it’s equally as tough as the first time. Alvarado is pissed. He wants revenge, and this one will be tougher on Rios.

“I don’t really have to prove a point, I’ve already proved I’m a great fighter,” Alvarado said. “I just want to win this fight.”

To Rios’ credit, he has stated he did some different training for this fight, and that’s great. But those plyometrics and strength and conditioning drills won’t shake the ire Alvarado has for his opponent. After all, Rios dealt the Denver-native his first career loss 168 days ago.

Don’t laugh, Alvarado’s been counting the days. I’m pretty sure he’s had this fight on his mind since the post-fight interviews in the ring after the first bout. His mind has been on nothing else. And it’s shown all week with his business-like attitude.

Alvarado also took on some new training, going back to Denver to train in the high altitude, intensifying his conditioning and cardio, and bringing in new sparring partners, who in hs words applied “pressure, pressure, pressure.” Saying that Rios was in his face the entire fight, he needed his sparring partners to do the same during fight camp.

And again, I’m not saying Rios hasn’t trained hard, but my take is he might be overconfident and I think I’m going to make him prove me wrong.

Alvarado is the clear value with how big a price he’s getting; but more than importantly, I like what I’ve seen and heard all week.

My money is on Milehigh Mike!

#RiosAlvarado #RiosAlvarado2 @MileHighMike303 @Brandon_Rios1 @HBOBoxing @TRBoxing

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