By Karl Freitag
Having faced each other in an all-out war just six months ago, junior welterweight sluggers Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado will enter the ring tonight with new strategies and tactics when they collide at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. But fighters both know this match can only unfold one way.
“You can always train differently to try to change things up,” said Alvarado, “but I think our styles and the way we approach the ring, it is automatically going to turn into that kind of fight [a war]. They are the styles we have. We are both warriors. We just fight and whoever comes out on top, that’s just the way it’s going to go…we can train any way we want – but once we get in that ring it’s on us to make adjustments and not get hit like we did, but you never know. There is only one way to find out and that’s when we get in the ring. We’ll see what happens.”
Rios agrees. War is the only option. “We have the same type of style,” he stated. “We both go fight each other. We try to get the job done the only way we know how. We can try to change it up in the gym, but once the bell rings and we get hit we go back to doing what we know how to do. That’s the warrior mentality that comes out of us. Mike Alvarado is Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios is Brandon Rios. We are going to give the fans what they want and we are going to give them a good show.”
Hall of Fame Promoter Bob Arum commented, “I don’t usually like to do immediate rematches but this first fight was really so great. There was a demand for it to get done and the people at HBO came up with a financial package that was very appealing. Both fighters are getting considerable more than they got the first time. It’s the exception that proves the rule.”
He added, “Fans aren’t stupid. They want to see action. Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios are action fighters. Timothy Bradley showed that he is an action fighter. Juan Manuel Marquez is an action fighter. Many Pacquiao is an action fighter. Ruslan Provodnikov is an action fighter. They don’t play around. They don’t dance around. They fight. That’s what the public wants to see, so we’ll mix and match as we go along because they are the big fights that people want to see. That is the way the fighters can be rewarded monetarily.”