By Skip Charles in Vegas
In one of the biggest upsets in 21st century boxing, Dmitry Bivol scored a unanimous decision over the sport’s top star, Canelo Alvarez.
All three judges scored the fight 115-113, and Bivol needed to win the final rounds on all three cards to avoid a draw. Equally puzzling: All three judges scored the first four rounds for Alvarez.
The judges’ view aside, Bivol (20-0, 11 KOs) was in control from the opening bell, as he used his size (including a 4-inch height advantage at 6 feet tall to the 5-8 Alvarez), range and jab to retain his light heavyweight title in his ninth defense.
“I prove myself today, I’m the best [in my division],” said Bivol, who resides in Saint Petersburg, Russia, but didn’t have his national anthem played at a time when many of his countrymen are being barred from competing in major sporting events due to the war in Ukraine. “Eddie Hearn, sorry I broke your plans with Gennadiy Golovkin.”
The long-awaited trilogy fight between Alvarez and Golovkin, the biggest event boxing can deliver, was already signed for Sept. 17. Instead, Alvarez said he plans to exercise his contractual right to an immediate rematch.
“It doesn’t end like this,” said Alvarez, who entered the ring rated No. 1 pound-for-pound by ESPN.