Say what you will about Saul Alvarez but the young fighter has his fans.
The 20-year-old Mexican junior middleweight’s unanimous-decision victory over Matthew Hatton on Saturday in Anaheim, Calif., was the most-watched Boxing After Dark main event in two years, according to HBO.
The audience of 1.4 million was the largest since James Kirkland vs. Joel Julio also delivered 1.4 million viewers in March 2009.
“Last Saturday night was one I’ll never forget, and I thank all my fans for their support,” said Alvarez, who defeated Hatton by three scores of 119-108. “I promise that I will always give them the fights they want to see and that I will proudly represent them and Mexico every time I step in the ring.”
Oscar De La Hoya, his promoter, is excited about his protégé.
“There are great boxers throughout the sport, but at just 20 years old, ‘Canelo’ has the charisma to connect with people like no fighter I’ve seen,” De La Hoya said. “He showed last week why we’ve been so excited about him and, now that he’s a world champion, he’ll get his chance to fight all the big names and make history.”
The announced attendance was 11,674, the second largest crowd at the Honda Center behind the 12,262 that watched Marco Antonio Barrera outpoint Daniel Jimenez in 1995. Julio Cesar Chavez’s KO victory over Joey Gamache drew 9,612 in 1996.