The fight between Brandon Rios (31-0-1, 23 knockouts) and Mike Alvarado (33-1-0, 23 knockouts) lived up to expectations, as both men put on one of the most entertaining boxing matches of the year.
Coming to their Oct. 13 encounter, Rios had a lot to prove, as his poor performance against Richard Abril earlier in the year forced many boxing fans to question his skills. However, "Bam Bam" redeemed himself with a seventh round TKO victory against Alvarado.
Rios and Alvarado came out swinging at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., with each man landing his share of power punches. Alvarado hurt Rios in the fifth round, but he wasn't able to put "Bam Bam" away.
Brandon Rios returned the favor in the seventh round, trapping Alvarado against the ropes, unloading a barrage of punches. Referee Pat Russell eventually jumped in and stopped the fight at the 1:57 mark of the seventh round.
"I could have gone a little longer, a little bit more," a pumped-up Rios said during the post-fight interview with Max Kellerman. "Mike Alvarado hits hard… he tested my chin, and I handled it, I'm ready for the next guy. I am a warrior… I go forward; I keep doing my game-plan."
Alvarado didn't seem too pleased with the stoppage, but I thought it was the right call. "Mile High" was clearly hurt, and it didn't look like he was about to recover.
"He shook me up a little bit, but I thought that it was stopped a bit early," Alvarado complained after the fight. "I could have kept going. I would have gotten my head back and got through it."
Top Rank Promoter, Bob Arum, indicated that the winner of the Rios vs. Alvarado matchup would probably be Manny Pacquiao's next opponent -- after his Dec. 8 bout against Juan Manuel Marquez -- so we'll probably get to see the two square up on April. 20.
One thing's for sure, Brandon Rios isn't intimidated by the possibility.
"You see what happened to Mike Alvarado? I think I can do it to them too [Pacquiao or Marquez]" Rios added. "Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. taught me well. Break the body, the head will fall down."
David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 9 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter.