Fighter's Planet weekend recap
Canelo Alvarez made his debut in the Big Apple, New York, at legendary sporting venue, Madison Square Garden, with an easy win over Rocky Fielding.
Canelo Alvarez vs. Rocky Fielding:
Boxing superstar Canelo Alvarez surprisingly was fighting for the first time in the Mecca of boxing, Madison Square Garden, and was also making his debut on the streaming service DAZN, which signed the Mexican star to a record breaking contract of $365 million for five years that includes 11 fights.
This fight was never taken by anyone as a real challenge to Alvarez (51-1-2) for his opponent was only chosen because of a secondary title he held, which would technically give Alvarez a championship in another weight class. It was an opportunity for Alvarez to expand his fan base in the east coast after mostly competing in Las Vegas and Mexico throughout his career.
The fight went as expected with Fielding not producing much opposition going down in each of the first three rounds, with Alvarez consistently attacking the body and landing flush shots to the ribs, eventually finishing off Fielding in the last minute of the third round.
Golden Boy Promotions has already reserved the T-Mobile arena in Las Vegas for an Alvarez fight on the Cinco De Mayo weekend, but Alvarez and his promoter Oscar De La Hoya have been mum about who Alvarez will be facing and are already ruling out a third bout with Golovkin after their two classic bouts in the last two years and are looking to side step International Boxing Federation middleweight champion, Daniel Jacobs, who was in attendance and entered the ring at the conclusion of the bout to congratulate Alvarez on his win.
A fight with Jacobs would seem to be ideal, as Jacobs holds a middleweight title and gave GGG a competitive bout in 2017.
Golovkin is also searching for that third bout with Alvarez, but he is a promotional free agent at the moment and Alvarez has stated that third fight can wait for now.
UFC Fight Night: Lee vs. Iaquinta 2
The UFC ended it’s seven year business relationship with the Fox Network after signing a deal earlier this year with ESPN to begin broadcasting their fights in 2019.
This would be the last card shown on Fox after that deal comes to an end, and while the card lacked some of the bigger names in the UFC, it still delivered a solid night of fights including a lightweight card with title ramifications for both fighters.
Al Iaquinta (14-4-1) ended his year with a tough win over perennial title contender, Kevin Lee, edging out a unanimous win to pick up an important victory in one of the UFC’s most stacked divisions.
Iaquinta has now won six of his last seven fights and his only loss was to current title holder, Khabib Nurmagomedov, a fight Iaquinta took on 24 hour notice for a chance at the lightweight title.
Iaquinta easily took rounds four and five, with Lee seemingly winning rounds 2 & 3. The first round was close, but there would be no argument with it going to Iaquinta.
Lee didn’t agree with the scorecards and felt he won the first three rounds.
In the co-main event, human highlight reel, Edson Barboza got back in the win column with a beating of Dan Hooker, who took a lot of punishment, but would not back down to his credit. Barboza (20-6) finally sealed the deal with a body shot in the third round.
Bellator 212: Primus vs. Chandler 2
Michael Chandler (19-4) claimed his third lightweight champion with a unanimous decision win over the man who dethroned Chandler in 2017, after Chandler suffered a freak leg injury and could not continue, handing the championship to Brent Primus.
Chandler has been plotting his revenge since and Primus was hoping to prove his title win was no fluke, but Chandler’s wrestling was just too much for Primus.
Primus was able to take Chandler’s back in the second round and almost pulled off the upset when he nearly submitted Chandler with a rear-naked choke, but Chandler was able to fight off the submission attempt and dominated the rest of the bout to claim his third title reign.
In the co-main event, former UFC heavyweight champion Frank Mir (18-13) suffered a stunning loss to Javy Ayala, by tapping to strikes in the second round. Mir suffered his fourth loss in a row.
Bellator 213: Macfarlane vs. Letourneau
In the second part of back to back cards for Bellator, flyweight champion Ilima-Lei Macfarlane (9-0) successfully defended her flyweight championship via third round submission.
The popular women’s champion was fighting in front of an adoring home crowd as Bellator became the biggest MMA promotion to produce an event in Hawaii in over ten years.
In the co-main event, former UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida (25-8), made his Bellator debut with split decision win over former Bellator middleweight champion, Rafael Carvalho.