Saturday, June 22, 2024  |



Bayless discusses Mayweather-Alvarez

Fighters Network


Referee Kenny Bayless spoke to regarding his selection to work the Sept. 14 fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Canelo Alvarez at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Showtime Pay Per View.

While Bayless will be in the ring with Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 knockouts) for the first time, he has handled Mayweather’s victories over Robert Apodaca in his professional debut in 1996, as well as his triumphs over Oscar De La Hoya and Shane Mosley in May of 2007 and May of 2010.

Bayless’ last major fight of the magnitude of Mayweather-Alvarez was in December of last year, the the dramatic sixth-round knockout that Juan Manuel Marquez scored over Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand.

Marquez was coming off November’s disputed majority decision loss to Pacquiao, having lost by a draw and a split-decision previously. Bayless has also worked Pacquiao’s split-decision win over Marquez in March of 2008. Your thoughts on being selected for Mayweather-Alvarez?

Kenny Bayless: I’m very honored that I’ve been chosen to do a fight of this magnitude. I’m looking forward to the fight on Sept. 14, and I anticipate that it’s going to be a great fight.

I’ll be ready for it, just like I have been ready for all of the fights in the past that I’ve been assigned to do, and I’m just thrilled that I got the assignment. I’m just waiting for Sept. 14. Having worked three of Mayweather’s fights, what do you take from those experiences into this one?

KB: Well, Mayweather is very talented, and the fact that I had the opportunity to watch it throughout his career just leads to the fact that he has grown in this sport.

We’ve watched him over the years. He’s considered by many as the best. For the most part, I can’t get into the logistics of ones ability, because I’m doing the fight.

But he’s a fighter that over the years has proven himself time and time again. So this fight on Sept. 14 is going to be a true test. Your thoughts on Alvarez?

KB: I would just like to say for Canelo, that he is a great champion, and that he has risen to the ranks just like fighters are expected to do. He’s a great talent.

So because of his talent, my position as the referee and the fact that I have never refereed him will not affect the fight at all.

He is worthy of this fight, because of his abilities, and because of that, I know that he will show his skills and that’s what the fans are there to see. What would be your response to an observer who might say that your not having worked an Alvarez fight could put him at a disadvantage?

KB: Because I’ve never refereed a Canelo fight does not mean that he’s at a disadvantage. Referees are trained all over the world basically the same way.

So regardless of the fact that he’s neither gotten into the ring with myself or with another referee, the standards we set as referees is pretty much the same.

So when Canelo enters the ring, he enters the ring as a fighter just like all of the fighters have before him.

So basically his job is to show the skills that have gotten him into the position that he’s in right now and to display them on Sept. 14. I’m thrilled that I have received the assignment, and I feel that this is going to be a great night for boxing.

The undercard is loaded with some great fighters, and I know that the town of Las Vegas is the best place for a fight of this magnitude. I’m looking forward to it, and I’m looking forward to the fans having a great time.



Photo by Tom Hogan, Hogan Photos, Golden Boy Promotions

Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]