Fighters featured on the Miguel Cotto vs. Canelo Alvarez undercard hosted a media workout in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino ahead of their scheduled fights on November 21.
Joining in the day’s festivities, WBC Super Featherweight World Champion, Takashi Miura (29-2-2, 22 KOs) and undefeated top contender Francisco “El Bandido” Vargas (22-0-1, 16 KOs), who are scheduled to face off in a12-round battle, gave fans something to cheer about as they shadow boxed in the ring.
Also in attendance, former WBA and WBO Super Bantamweight World Champion and one of boxing’ best pound-for-pound fighters Guillermo Rigondeaux (15-0, 10 KOs) of Santiago de Cuba, Cuba and Drian Francisco (28-3-1, 22 KOs) of the Philippines not only showed off in the ring, but spent time with fans at the media event ahead of their 10-round super bantamweight fight.
Miguel Cotto Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions, undefeated, multiple-regional title champion Jayson “Star” Velez (23-0-1, 16 KOs) of Caguas, Puerto Rico, and opponent Santa Ana, California’s Ronny Rios (24-1, 10 KOs) were also in attendance ahead of their Puerto Rico vs. Mexico themed 10-round featherweight bout.
IBF Bantamweight World Champion, Randy “El Matador” Caballero (22-0, 13 KOs) and England’s Lee “Playboy” Haskins (32-3, 14 KOs) were on hand to show off in the ring and address members of the press ahead of their scheduled 12-round world championship bout.
Making his Las Vegas debut, heavyweight prospect Zhang Zhilei (5-0, 3 KOs) of Zhengzhou, China came into the ring and gave the fans a display of power.
Below is what the fighters had to say about their upcoming bouts.
TAKASHI MIURA, WBC Super Featherweight World Champion:
“This is a big fight for me and I am ready to defend my title and prove I am still the best fighter in the division.
“This will be my fifth title defense and my tenth consecutive victory. I am proud of that accomplishment and will be ready to give fans an exciting fight.”
FRANCISCO VARGAS, Super Featherweight World Title Contender:
“I have had a great training camp, with a lot of conditioning running in the mountains and making sure I sparred with fighters who had similar qualities to Takashi.
“The thought of carrying Mexico with me has made me concentrated and motivated to win the fight on Saturday.
“I am feel good and my goal is always to bring the best of myself in the ring and so far I feel like I have delivered exciting fights to all the fans. Saturday will be no different. I am ready to deliver a great fight and I am also ready to deliver a victory to Mexico.
“I feel ready to fight him. We know that the Japanese come and fight hard but I think the Mexicans are better.”
GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX, Former WBA and WBO Super Bantamweight World Champion:
“I would like to thank Roc Nation Sports for the opportunity. I’m really happy to be a part of the Roc Nation family now. Signing with Roc Nation has been the best decision I have made. They are capable of taking my career to the next level. It’s what I need to stay active in the ring and give the fans what they want. I appreciate all the fans coming out today. The preparation is done and I’m ready to get in the ring and give the fans a show.
“I’m a very good boxer. And I’m always going to be ready for the next fight. And the fans are going to see that I can put on a show every time. Get ready to see what’s coming next.
“To the rest of the super bantamweights out there with belts, beware because I am coming for them. I’m coming for all the belts and I am going to destroy them all.
“I am the real champion. And everyone knows it. If you want to step in the ring with me, to prove it, let’s do it. It’s up to the fans to demand it from their champion to step up and get in the ring with me. They can run, but they can’t hide.
“Once I’m done with Francisco, I’m ready to fight everyone else. My energy after that will be spent winning all my belts back. I don’t need to say I am the best. I demonstrate it. I will fight anyone at my weight.
DRIAN FRANCISCO, Super Bantamweight Contender:
“I know that Rigondeaux is one of the best fighters. He’s one of the top four or five best fighters in the world. But I’m here to fight and I am here to win.
“I’m mentally prepared for this fight. I hope the fans will support me. I will do my best in the ring.”
JAYSON VELEZ, Featherweight Contender:
“I’m excited, I feel happy, it’s my first time fighting here, fighting in a great event, fighting in Las Vegas, first time fighting on HBO Pay-Per-View, I’m happy, what more can I ask?
“I’m ready to be a world champion, I’m ready to fight Ronny. He’s a top fighter but I will beat him.
“Mexico vs Puerto Rico are the top fighters in boxing so I’m happy to be part of that.”
RONNY RIOS, Featherweight Contender:
“I’m not going to say anything, I’ve never been a talker. I’m just going to go out there and show it.
“It means a lot to me that my fans have stood by me. Last year was a very hard year for us so that means a lot. I’m really thankful and grateful.
“Fighting at this level, getting an opportunity like this, we have to take our game up ten notches. We’re focused, we’re ready and stay tuned and watch. I’m sure you’ll see an exciting fight.”
RANDY CABALLERO, IBF Bantamweight World Champion:
“It’ll be an action-packed night but I promise everybody it will be my night to shine. I’m going to show them why I’m the IBF Bantamweight world champion.
“I don’t care who it is, I’ll fight anybody. From heavyweight to straw weight, I’ll take whoever.
“I know him, I see that hunger in him, a young hungry Canelo that wants to come out on top where he belongs and I think he’s going to pull it off.”
LEE HASKINS, IBF Bantamweight Mandatory Challenger:
“Fighting in Las Vegas, fighting in a fight of this magnitude, I never thought in my dreams I’d be on an undercard like this, that’s what’s giving me the extra push.
“It feels absolutely amazing, just to be here. The magnitude of the fight, seeing everybody here, just up in the middle of the Vegas square, it’s incredible.
“I take nothing away from that, I’m sure he’s done a lot of sparing and he’s just as ready as myself. I’m just looking forward to having a great fight.”
ZHANG ZHILEI, Heavyweight Prospect:
“I really appreciate the exposure that I will have on Nov. 21. And I welcome the fans from all over the world to watch my fight and to see how exciting I can make the fight. I will do my best to get a knockout.
“I don’t know a lot about my opponent, just basic information. For training, I concentrate on my part and what my trainer has told me. For me, I just have to do what I do in the ring.
“I’ll bring an exciting fight to Nov. 21 and I’ll make everyone remember there’s a giant from the East.”
Cotto vs. Canelo, a 12-round fight for Cotto’s Ring Magazine and Lineal Middleweight World Championships, takes place Saturday, Nov. 21 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The fight is presented by Roc Nation Sports, Golden Boy Promotions, Miguel Cotto Promotions and Canelo Promotions and sponsored by Corona Extra; Mexico, Live it to Believe it!; O’Reilly Auto Parts; Tequila Cazadores and Corporate Travel Management Solutions (ctms). Also on the HBO Pay-Per-View telecast will be Takashi Miura vs. Francisco Vargas in a 12-round co-featured fight for the WBC Super Featherweight World Championship presented in association with Teiken Promotions; Guillermo Rigondeaux vs. Drian Francisco in a 10-round super bantamweight bout presented in association with Caribe Promotions; and Jayson Velez vs. Ronny Rios is a 10-round bout for the WBC Silver Featherweight World Championship, which will open the Pay-Per-View telecast. The event will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.
Randy Caballero vs. Lee Haskins, a 12-round fight for the IBF Bantamweight World Championship, is presented in association with Bristol Boxing Ltd. and will be featured as part of the preliminary undercard available on digital platforms starting at 7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. PT. Also part of the preliminary undercard available on digital platforms will be a four-round heavyweight bout featuring 2008 Olympic Silver Medalist Zhang Zhilei who faces Juan Goode.
In addition to the great action inside the ring, the event will feature a special live performance by 2015 Latin Grammy nominee Yandel. The performance will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View after the second fight of the pay-per-view telecast.
A limited number of tickets priced at $2,000, $1,750, $1,250 and $650, not including applicable service charges, can be purchased at the Mandalay Bay box office, ticketmaster.com, mandalaybay.com, all Ticketmaster locations or by calling (800) 745-3000. Ticket orders are limited to four per person.
Tickets for closed circuit viewings of Cotto vs. Canelo at select MGM Resorts International properties in Las Vegas are priced at $75, not including applicable service charges, and can be purchased at all MGM Resorts International Ticket Offices, http://www.ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster locations or by calling (800) 745-3000.
Miguel Cotto vs. Canelo Alvarez will be presented live with Fathom Events in select theaters nationwide. Tickets for theater screenings of Cotto vs. Canelo can be purchased online by visiting www.FathomEvents.com or at participating theater box offices. For a complete list of theater locations visit www.fathomevents.com/event/cotto-vs-canelo-live.