Canelo Alvarez vs. Liam “Beefy’ Smith.
Arlington, Texas vs. Las Vegas, Nev.
AT&T Stadium vs. MGM Grand Garden Arena.
Competition is never a bad thing.
On Sept. 17, the Alvarez-Smith WBO Junior Middleweight fight will be held at AT&T Stadium. It will be the third major boxing event staged at AT&T Stadium.
In 2010, Manny Pacquiao defended his WBO World Welterweight Championship by beating Joshua Clottey in front of a crowd of 50,944. Pacquiao returned in 2012 to beat Antonio Margarito in a WBC Super Welterweight title fight in front of a crowd of 41,734.
AT&T Stadium was also in the conversation to host the Pacquiao-Floyd Mayweather fight in 2015, the richest bout in boxing history, before it was set at the MGM Grand.
Is AT&T Stadium the new go-to venue for boxing?
"Las Vegas has such a great reputation as being an area where they've staged some of the great fights,” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said on a pre-game show Thursday before his team’s preseason game at Seattle. “We've literally given them some competition.”
In real estate, it’s all about location.
In sports, it’s all about the fans.
AT&T Stadium has both.
“It's because of our fan base and because of our attendance. When you put a fight on and they're in that ring and they're about 6 feet tall and right above them they're about 70 feet tall and you can be sitting 300 feet away and see their baby blue eyes, you can put a fight on,” Jones said.
Jones was referencing the center video board at the stadium that runs from 20-yard line to 20-yard line. It is 160 feet in length and 72 feet in height.
Fans will be able to view the boxing action close up on all levels of the stadium. The fight is also being held during the Mexican Independence Day weekend which could impact attendance even more.
"We have an amazing percent of our fans who are fighting fans, boxing fans,” Jones said. “Certainly, our Hispanic fans love boxing.
“We're excited about having it. That's one of the reasons we do it.”
It doesn’t hurt to have a connection with Oscar De La Hoya, who visited the Cowboys training camp in Oxnard, Calif., and spoke to the team. The fight is being presented by De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Productions in association with Frank Warren and Canelo Promotions.
“Well, Texas loves Canelo. Texas loves boxing,” De La Hoya told the media earlier in the week. “I mean, just like any other part of the world, people love Canelo and they want to see Canelo because he brings excitement to the sport. He brings exciting fights.”