As we get ready to see the second showdown between the highly anticipated rematch of Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado, we take a look at the game plan that both fighters will need to execute in order to be the winner come Sunday morning:
For Brandon Rios to win:
Rios won the first fight, which means he has the slight mental advantage going into the fight. The fight may have been stopped early but Rios had an edge on the judge’s scorecards despite the unofficial media cards leaning towards Alvarado. Rios needs to do exactly what he did the first fight. He needs to keep the fight on the inside where he has the advantage. Go to the body, come back to the head, and don’t give Alvarado any distance to establish a jab. Rios is willing to get hit to get in on the inside. That’s what he’s going to have to do. On the inside, Alvarado tends to drop his hands, allowing Rios to land clean shots to the head that the judges see clearly. Close rounds will most likely go to Rios, which will work to his advantage. The continuing pressure in the first fight was wearing Alvarado down, and he’ll need to do that this time around to assure another victory.
For Mike Alvarado to win:
In the first fight Alvarado had success with the jab. He needs to continue that. Throw the jab, throw the jab, and throw the jab. Don’t allow it to be the same type of brawl that it was the first fight. Alvarado was successful throwing combinations off the jab while keeping Rios away from him. Rios doesn’t move his head a lot. Those combinations from a distance land, and clean shots get through Brandon’s guard. If he is going to fight on the inside, he needs to throw a quick combo and get out. He did have success fighting on the inside in the first fight but he stuck around too long which worked towards the advantage of Rios. Alvarado isn’t great at backing down from a war, but he’ll need to pick and choose his inside battles in this fight. Rios didn’t seem fazed by his punches which means he’ll either need a late KO by wearing Rios down all fight, or he’ll need to convince the judges he won more rounds.
This fight is going to be a lot closer than everyone thinks. Many think that Rios is going to KO Alvarado quicker this time, I don’t see how that’s going to happen. Alvarado is going to box, and I expect him to take Rios the entire twelve rounds whether or not he wins or loses. I’m going with the upset. I think Alvarado boxes this time, and wins a UD on the judge’s scorecards.
The owner of Fightnights is going with Rios again.
Follow Editor Gabriel Gonzalez on twitter @GabeJGonzalez