Canelo Alvarez has been in the market for a challenge. He last made quick work of Avni Yildirim, in a fight that can only be construed as wildly one-sided. Can Billy Joe Saunders put up more resistance? You better believe our Canelo Alvarez vs Billy Joe Saunders betting picks are going to figure it out.
First, let's look at the odds for this fight, courtesy of the folks over at BetOnline:
|Canelo Alvarez||-750||+525||Billy Joel Sanders|
Whenever you see boxing odds that heavily favor one fighter, it's a good idea to double-check them at other sportsbooks, like Bovada or BetNow, before deciding on a waver. Those types of betting lines can fluctuate from one site to another. Fortunately, we did the digging for you and can confirm that Alvarez is the massive favorite no matter which sportsbook you're using.
Canelo Alvarez vs. Billy Joe Saunders Betting Breakdown
- When: Saturday, May 8
- Time: 9 p.m. EST
- Where: AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas
The Case for Alvarez
The odds make Alvarez's case for him. He is a huge favorite, so much so it almost makes you wonder why this is a headlining matchup.
As the WBA, WBC and The Ring Super Middleweight champion, Alvarez's style needs no introduction. He prides himself on accurate power. Anyone who doesn't have superior lateral agility or matches his force is in trouble. Just look at what happened to Yildirim in their match. He didn't even see a fourth round.
Though Saunders is a much different fighter, he also doesn't come close to rivaling the thrust Alvarez generates behind his combinations. Like all fights involving Alvarez, you shouldn't be surprised if this one ends in a knockout.
The Case For Saunders
Looking at the odds, you might be wondering whether Saunders even has a case of which to speak. Believe it or not, he does.
What Saunders lacks in raw power—he has just two knockouts over his last eight victories—he makes up for with guile. Few boxers are as opportunistic. If opponents on offense leave even the slightest sliver of daylight as they're trying to land combinations at an angle, he will get in his fair share of licks.
Saunders also has the capacity to land punches from a distance. He has a 71-inch reach and knows how to hit while transitioning from defense to offense. This could be a situation in which he lands a single combination while Alvarez is off balance and bags his first knockout in a while.
How Many Rounds Will Alvarez-Saunders Last?
- Over 10.5 (-165)
- Under 10.5 (+135)
Here we have evidence that Saunders' moneyline might be undervalued. If Alvarez really was a 7.5-to-1 favorite, the over on the number of rounds wouldn't be set so high.
This line, in particular, tracks on its own. Just as Saunders isn't a knockout king, he is not especially prone to get KO'd. Stamina is among his greatest weapons. The longer the match goes, the better chance he has of wearing Alvarez down, bagging an upset in the form of the rare KO or by decision.
Pushing Alvarez that far will entail a delicate balancing act. Saunders cannot hope to survive by merely playing defense. He needs to go on offense. But he at the same time needs to pick his spots. One wrong-footed combination attempt could portend a lights-out blow from Alvarez.
Regardless of who you have winning this match, color us skeptical that it gets to Round 11 or Round 12. Both these fighters, while dissimilar, champion exhaustive energy. Saunders may be able to go for longer, but his own stamina should be shortened by the hits he'll invariably take from Alvarez.
OSB Prediction: Under 10.5 (+135)
Alvarez vs. Saunders Prediction
This should come as no surprise, but we're rolling with Alvarez.
With that said, if you're looking to play the long shot, this isn't a bad time to do it. We would give Saunders a better than 20 percent of picking up the victory. At +525, that's fairly intriguing.
But we ultimately question whether he'll be able to hang on offense. Saunders usually likes to sit back and let his opponents try to work his inside. That will give Alvarez some trouble, but his amalgam of precision and power is unique. Letting him come to you is a good way to get knocked out.
OSB Prediction: Canelo Alvarez (-750)
But Is There Actual Betting Value In Alvarez?
The thing with heavy favorites is they don't pay out a lot of money on their own. You need to bet $750 just to win $100 on Alvarez's moneyline. That's not worth the risk for many people, and simply wagering $100 will only net you $13.33 in profit.
Higher rollers can get away with gambling thousands upon thousands on Alvarez so they really feel the victory. For the Average Joe and Josie, we recommend parlaying Alvarez's moneyline with the under 10.5 rounds bet. Putting those together will bring back almost $167 in pure profit for every $100 you wager. And last we checked, a 1.67-to-1 return is waaay better than the alternative.
Check out this list of the best online sportsbook so you can decide which to use for all your boxing bets: