Boxing fans of Houston lined up all the way around Minute Maid Park on Monday, July 1, for a chance to see boxing superstars Floyd "Money" Mayweather and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez as they promoted the fight nicknamed "The One," which will be held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on September 14. Mayweather, eight-time and five-division world champion, has selected the undefeated Mexican boxing sensation as his opponent for the super welterweight mega-bout.
Golden Boy Promotions president and Houston Dynamo part owner Oscar De La Hoya was on hand to host the press conference. The fighters are on an 11-city tour that includes Houston, San Antonio, Phoenix and Los Angeles. The Phoenix stop was canceled out of respect for the 19 fallen firefighters who died battling the Yarnell Hill Wild Fire, and De La Hoya announced that a large monetary donation and other support will be provided to the families of the deceased.
Although many in the boxing world would have rather seen Mayweather match up with Filipino world champion Manny Pacquiao, this fight between the "Money" team and the rising Mexican superstar will no doubt be one of the most watched matches in the sport's history.
Canelo entered the press conference first as mariachi music blared and his fans roared in appreciation. The freckled redhead smiled as he took the stage and signed autographs for his fans.
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Mayweather walked in to the controversial rap track "U.O.E.N.O." by Rocko, dressed in a fashionable pink sweater and large sunglasses. He was interrupted several times by the crowd's chants of "CAN-E-LO!" as the majority of the fans in attendance favored his opponent.
In a prepared statement given to the media, Mayweather shared the following:
I looked at several different fighters and decided to pick Canelo because he can give me a great fight and one the fans are going to appreciate. Sure it's a risk to fight a guy that is younger and bigger than me, but I love taking risks. Be ready because I'm in fantastic shape and I'm going to train even harder for this fight than I did for my last one.
Both fighters thanked Houston fans and promised a great fight come September 14.