WBC, WBA, Lineal Middleweight World Champion Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) and WBA Super Middleweight World Champion Rocky Fielding (27-1, 15 KOs) hosted a their final press conference today at Madison Square Garden ahead of their 12-round super middleweight fight. The battle will take place Saturday, Dec. 15 at the aforementioned Madison Square Garden in New York City and will be streamed live on DAZN – which, at just $9.99 per month after a one-month free trial, means new subscribers to DAZN will enjoy the entire Canelo vs. Rocky fight night for free.
They were joined by David Lemieux (40-4, 34 KOs), Tureano Johnson (20-2, 14 KOs), Sadam “World Kid” Ali (26-2, 14 KOs), Mauricio “El Maestro” Herrera (24-7, 7 KOs) and many other fighters from the undercard.
Below is what the fighters had to say at today’s final press conference:
CANELO ALVAREZ, WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion:
“I’m very happy to be here at Madison Square Garden. It’s just yet another story, another dream realized in my career and this new phase of my career with DAZN. I’m very happy and I’m motivated. Perhaps many don’t give the credit to Rocky Fielding that he deserves but for a reason, he’s a world champion. I know who he is, I’ve trained very hard, I know the challenge I have in front of me. I know that I have a tough fight but I like challenges and I know we’re going to make history. I’m ready for that.”
ROCKY FIELDING, WBA Super Middleweight World Champion:
“It’s great to be here. I was here years ago, sitting right at the top over there, watching a Knicks game, wishing one day to fight here. Now I’ve put a lot of work in, I’ve had a lot of setbacks, and here we are. It’s unbelievable. I’m looking forward to it I believe in myself. I come here as a champion, and that’s what champions do – they win, and they defend. This is a great opportunity and I’m very happy to be here.”
JOSE “CHEPO” REYNOSO, Manager and Trainer of Canelo Alvarez:
“Madison Square Garden, be prepared because Canelo is coming to conquer you and to write in the story of MSG.”
EDDY REYNOSO, Manager and Head Trainer of Canelo Alvarez:
“We know it’s going to be a tough fight. Every time a fighter moves up in weight, the fighter has to experiment on how he’s going to feel. Fielding is a strong fighter, he’s a tough fighter, but more than anything’s, he’s a world champion. We know we have a big compromise ahead and I’m taking the responsibility to make sure all the details are covered off on. I just hope that this Saturday, Mexico is excited for Canelo to become a three-division world champion. We’ve excited for him to join the exclusive history of Mexican boxing this Saturday.”
JAMIE MOORE, Trainer of Rocky Fielding:
“I think boxing’s all about timing. And Rocky Fielding made sure he was ready when he got the phone call for a world title with five weeks’ notice. It came at the right time for him. And when we got the phone call for the Canelo fight, he took it without hesitation. There’s weight divisions for a reason. I applaud Canelo, I admire his tenacity and his will to achieve greatness. But it’s all about timing. I just think that this is the right time for Rocky Fielding. He’s in a great place mentally and physically. And I’m looking forward to shocking the world and delivering a big upset.”
DAVID LEMIEUX, Former IBF Middleweight World Champion:
“I’m extremely happy to be back at Madison Square Garden. I was here three years ago in a unification fight with Golovkin. It didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to but over the years, I’ve learned a lot. I believe I’m at my peak. The greatest years are yet to come for me. Saturday night will be a step towards that. I promise everyone a great fight. Tureano Johnson is a great fighter, but we’ve trained extremely hard for him so we don’t have any surprises in the ring. Whatever he brings forward, I’ll take care of it.”
TUREANO JOHNSON, Middleweight Contender:
“It’s going to be an exciting night. I’m excited, I’m ready, I’m energized. I respect Lemieux. I have a lot of respect for him. You guys can expect an awesome fight. I’m definitely coming to bring it. Come Saturday night, they’re going to see a different Tureano – a more intelligent fighter.”
MAURICIO HERRERA, Former Interim WBA Super Lightweight Prospect:
“This is a great opportunity and I feel blessed to fight here at the Madison Square Garden. Sadam is a great fighter but I put on a great show as well. The both of us together will be a fight to remember.”
SADAM ALI, Former WBO Junior Middleweight World Champion
“I’m excited. I’m ready. This is a big fight, Every fight is a big fight. There’s nothing like fighting at home. It doesn’t get to happen every time but when it does, I’m excited and I’m ready.”
VERGIL ORTIZ JR, Super Lightweight Prospect
“I’m very happy to be fighting here at Madison Square Garden. For some reason I thought it’d be a square…it’s not a square. It’s my first fight in New York. Other than that, I’m just happy to be here.”
KATIE TAYLOR, WBA/IBF Lightweight World Champion
“I’m here to bring my very very best. I know [Eva’s] a great competitor and a fantastic fighter. I just can’t wait to put on an exciting fight.”
TEVIN FARMER, IBF Super Featherweight World Champion:
“I’m ready for Saturday. It’s another opportunity to show that I’m one of the best in the world.”
LAMONT ROACH JR., WBO International Super Featherweight Champion:
“I feel blessed to be on this stage. I’m going to kick it off with a bang.”
RYAN GARCIA, Lightweight Prospect:
“We had two months of nonstop work, really focused, and now I’m just ready to put on my best performance at Madison Square Garden. What better place than Madison Square Garden? I’m just ready to prove and show everybody what I’ve been improving on and what I’m going to bring for times to come.”
OSCAR DE LA HOYA, CEO and Chairman of Golden Boy Promotions:
“Ladies and gentlemen – pay-per-view is dead. I’m happy to announce that on Saturday night, Dec. 15, Canelo Álvarez will experience a lot of firsts: his first fight in the mecca of boxing at MSG, the first fight of this historical contract with DAZN, his first time traveling to the 168-pound weight class as he looks to make history as part of a small list of Mexican fighters to become a three-division world champion.”
“Rocky, who has the most recognizable first name in all of boxing, will look to take advantage of the opportunity of a lifetime.”
“If you can’t make it to the Garden, you can always download the app DAZN. And we are extremely proud to have been able to strike a deal with such visionaries – not only in the sport of boxing but in sports in general. For me, it’s a bittersweet moment to talk about pay-per-view being dead because my career was built on pay-per-view, but this digital platform is thinking about the fans. So this fight, Canelo vs. Rocky, you will be able to download DAZN for free for one month and watch this historical night where Canelo Álvarez will be able to showcase his talents and fight against a bigger guy, a heavier guy, a stronger guy, a champion, who fights at 168 pounds. So if you ask me, I think that’s a great deal.”
“Thank you HBO for all of the memories. Over the years, you have been a true pioneer…but there’s a new kid on the block and his name is DAZN.”
BERNARD HOPKINS, Future Hall of Famer and Golden Boy Promotions Business Partner:
“What I’ll say to everyone is take this opportunity, even Canelo and Rocky, to put your DNA in the history of the great legendary MSG. Enjoy the fight. DAZN is here. Enjoy the fight and get ready for 2019.”
JOE MARKOWSKI, Executive Vice President, DAZN North America:
“In parts of the twentieth century, the heavyweight champion was the most famous man in the world. But then something changed. Pay-per-view. Boxing became one of the only sports to take its biggest moments and deliver them to smallest audience possible. And that’s why Saturday night is such a milestone. The last king of pay-per-view Canelo Alvarez will become the first king of sports streaming. This fight is not 75 or 100 dollars. Canelo-Rocky is free on DAZN for all new subscribers.”
“This is just the beginning and we encourage everyone to join us for this ride. It’s simple. Just like you would with Netflix or Hulu, you download our app, sign up and watch amazing content on all devices – including the big screen on the wall of your living room.”
EDDIE HEARN, Managing Director of Matchroom Sports:
“I remember Eric Gomez calling me up and asking if Rocky Fielding would like to fight Canelo Álvarez. Not once did he ask about the money. It was a yes. This is everything to Rocky Fielding. This is the opportunity of a lifetime, to come to MSG and defend his world title against Canelo Álvarez. I believe he’s going to give Canelo Álvarez everything he has and everything he can handle.”
“DAZN is a game-changer for the world of boxing. Normally U.S. fight fans would have to put their hands in their pockets for $80, $100. Not only is this a great deal for fans in terms of price, but production is top shelf.”
Golden Boy Promotions, a legendary boxing promoter, and DAZN, the global sport streaming giant, have announced a landmark five-year global partnership that brings superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez to the live and on-demand service for his next 11 iconic fights.
The groundbreaking deal with Canelo is the richest contract for an athlete in sporting history. It underlines DAZN’s promise to revolutionise the way fans watch sport and signals the beginning of the end for pay-per-view, which has traditionally been the home of boxing’s biggest fights.
“We are thrilled to be exclusive partners with Golden Boy Promotions and Oscar De La Hoya,” said John Skipper, DAZN Group Executive Chairman. “By bringing Canelo’s fights to DAZN, we will turn his pay-per-view success into a growth engine for subscribers – a truly transformational moment for our business and the entire industry.”
The partnership will see Golden Boy Promotions hold up to 10 high-caliber fight nights per year that DAZN will stream live and exclusively from early 2019 around the world, in the United States, Canada, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Japan. Sport fans will be able to watch all Canelo and 10 Golden Boy Promotions fights a year for a low monthly subscription.
“This is easily one of the best days in the growing history of Golden Boy Promotions,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Golden Boy Promotions Chairman and CEO. “We are committed to making this sport as accessible as possible and at an affordable price for all the fans. My dream has been to make boxing a sport for all. DAZN has the perfect platform to make this dream come true, and with the biggest star in the sport at the helm of this journey, I have no doubts that we will succeed in unimaginable ways.”
This announcement builds on DAZN’s already impressive boxing credentials, which saw the launch of Matchroom Boxing USA. The $1 billion deal, announced in May, includes 16 fights a year in the U.S. featuring some of the sport’s biggest stars at the best venues across America.
The journey begins for the 28-year-old Álvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) on Saturday, Dec. 15 when he makes his first appearance at the iconic Madison Square Garden challenging Rocky Fielding (27-1, 15 KOs) for his WBA Super Middleweight title.
“I’ve always liked a challenge, and this is yet another challenger in my career,” said Canelo Alvarez. “Being part of this historic deal will require me to prepare myself even more and offer fans even better performances. At the same time, I am humbled to be selected to lead this new vision for the sport of boxing, which will without a doubt be for the benefit of the fans.”
Alvarez is coming off the biggest win of his career in September, a thrilling majority decision victory against Gennady “GGG” Golovkin to become the WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight champion. His 50-win career also boasts victories over Miguel Cotto, Amir Khan, Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara, Austin Trout, “Sugar” Shane Mosley, among many others. Now Alvarez will now seek to join a small and illustrious list of three-division world champions from Mexico as he steps up to 168 pounds to challenge Fielding.
DAZN burst onto the scene just over two years ago, debuting in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Japan. Its early success across Europe and Asia was followed by launches in Canada (2017), Italy (2018) and the United States (2018), where DAZN announced blockbuster deals with Matchroom Boxing and Bellator MMA to deliver a stacked slate of fight sports content upon entry into the market.
The DAZN-Golden Boy deal includes a large production element, which places Oscar De La Hoya as Executive Producer of the 12 live fight nights annually. The live productions will be a collaboration between DAZN and Golden Boy Media and Entertainment, De La Hoya’s in-house production arm, and will push the boundaries of traditional boxing shows by incorporating new features with virtual graphics and social media interaction.
Oscar De La Hoya’s 7,000-hour library of fights spanning his career as a boxer and a promoter are included in the partnership and these classic bouts will be available on DAZN. Additionally, Golden Boy Media and Entertainment will produce volumes of shoulder programs for the DAZN platform, including live studio shows such as “Between the Ropes” and its award winning “Mano a Mano.” De La Hoya has had a vision for the sport of boxing, and part and parcel to that vision are new approaches to telling the stories of the fighters for a global audience through live, scripted and social media programming. The new partnership between DAZN and Golden Boy allow this vision to flourish and to create narratives that appeal across demographic categories worldwide.