Referees always impart the rules of boxing just before a fight. For instance, Kenny Bayless explained to Canelo Alvarez and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. that they were not allowed to hit below the belt Saturday during their title fight at T-Mobile Arena.
I expect the fighters already knew this rule, and the others recited, but never hurts to be sure.
Canelo won the fight by unanimous decision, 120-108 on all three scorecards.
And now we touch gloves, and come out … writing:
Celebs at T-Mobile
Those in attendance at a capacity T-Mobile included Magic Johnson, Dave Chappelle, George Lopez, Mario Lopez and Ice Cube. Chappelle, who performed Friday night at a sold-out Mandalay Bay Events Center, has been all over the Strip this weekend. He and Eddie Griffin (with a party of 35) dined at Beauty and Essex at the Cosmopolitan on Friday, and STK on Saturday with a party of eight before the fight.
And of that group, who got the loudest cheer? I would say Magic. People went nuts for him.
Floyd Mayweather’s Girl Collection strip club celebrated its “soft opening” on Friday night, a party with a festive Cinco de Mayo theme. This is Mayweather’s nightlife venture on the site of the former Sheri’s Cabaret adult club, at 2580 S. Highland Drive, near Sahara Avenue and Interstate 15.
In what might or might not be be the club’s first financial disclosure, TMZ has posted a video of the Money Man carting stacks of cash out of the club and into an awaiting SUV.
Hosting this lid-lifter at the Girl Collection was Rosa Acosta, a member of the cast of VH1’s “Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood.” Acosta is a ballet-trained dancer, fitness buff, model — and also the ex-girlfriend of Rob Kardashian. She’s also reported to be the current girlfriend of hip-hop star French Montana.
Ratner of the ring
Marc Ratner posted near ringside of a major fight is not such a significant event. A member of the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame, Ratner spent 21 years with the Nevada Athletic Commission, including 14 years as its executive director. In 2006, Rather left the commission, which sanctions all fights in the state, to take a role as vice president of regulatory affairs for the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Ratner said picking a favorite between boxing and mixed-martial arts is not possible. “They are both combat sports,” Ratner said. “What I tell the world is, I have two kids — you don’t have to pick one over the other. Boxing is like my older kid, mixed-martial arts is my younger kid.”
Meanwhile, at Mandalay Bay
As the main event started, we received word that three-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks was hanging at Mizuya lounge at Mandalay Bay. He was supporting his wife, Rita Wilson, who was making her debut in the “Nashville Unplugged “show that is staged 8 p.m. Fridays at the Mandalay Bay hot spot. A Hanks sighting, and Wilson’s participation, was a real boon for “NU” founder Aaron Benward and the band.
A quick memory
The Canelo-Chavez card reminded me of a fight I covered oh so many years ago. It was June 1996, shortly after moving to Las Vegas, and it matched Julio Cesar Chavez and Oscar De La Hoya at the outdoor arena at Caesars Palace. Two takeaways: Chavez was easily the fan favorite, with the crowd roaring, “Juuuu-lio! Juuuu-lio!” throughout. And, De La Hoya easily dominated the waning legend and forcing a fourth-round stoppage because of a gruesome cut over Chavez’s right eye.
Both De La Hoya and Chavez were at T-Mobile, of course, De La Hoya representing his Golden Boy Promotions and Chavez working as a ringside analyst as his son battled in the ring. De La Hoya was in a suit, Chavez in a tux, both looking a lot better than they did at Caesars 21 years ago.
Maloof on ice
Bumped into Vegas Golden Knights minority owner Gavin Maloof, who sensed the energy of T-Mobile for sporting events. T-Mobile has hosted basketball, UFC and boxing events, and its deep rake makes the place especially loud. The design puts fans right on top of the action. “This should be a really loud place for us,” Maloof says. “There is not a bad seat anywhere.” When full, T-Mobile really rocks, and it was really rocking Saturday. The ears were ringing, but not in a bad way.