LAS VEGAS -- In a wild outdoor scene, middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez and challenger Amir Khan, the welterweight contender moving up in weight, were both exactly on the 155-pound catchweight limit at the weigh-in Friday afternoon.
They will meet for the 160-pound world title Saturday (HBO PPV, 9 p.m. ET) at the T-Mobile Arena, a $375 million facility that opened last month and will be hosting its first boxing card.
The weigh-in took place outdoors at the arena's Toshiba Plaza, where thousands of fans gathered to cheer on the fighters despite a chilly breeze and occasional sprinkles. Boxing legends Roberto Duran, Lennox Lewis and Evander Holyfield, and Golden Boy promoters Oscar De La Hoya and Bernard Hopkins, also participated in the festivities.
Most of the crowd comprised of Alvarez's loyal Mexican fans celebrating Cinco de Mayo weekend, but there was also a vocal contingent of Khan's fans, who made the trip from England for the biggest fight of his career.
"I feel great making the weight, and I'm look forward to a great fight [Saturday night]," Alvarez, 25, told the crowd. "I know I'm fighting a fast fighter with a lot of experience, but I can also fight and I have a lot of experience also."
Khan (31-3, 19 KOs), 29, a former junior welterweight titleholder who moved up to the welterweight division in 2014, had never weighed more than 147 for any previous fight. By challenging Alvarez (46-1-1, 32 KOs), Khan is bidding to become only the third fighter in boxing history to win world titles at junior welterweight and middleweight. The others are Miguel Cotto, from whom Alvarez took the title by decision in November, and De La Hoya, who finished his career having won world titles in a then-record six weight classes.
"It's a big challenge," said Khan, who credited training partners Andre Ward, the former super middleweight champion and unbeaten light heavyweight contender, and former welterweight titleholder Andre Berto for pushing him hard in the training camp they share under trainer Virgil Hunter. "I'm up against a great fighter, but I am focused and 100 percent confident I can go in there and win it."
Former middleweight titlist David Lemieux (34-3, 31 KOs) and Glen Tapia (23-2, 15 KOs), who are both coming off losses, made weight for the 10-round co-feature. Lemieux, who missed weight for a March fight that was ultimately canceled, was right on the division limit of 160. Tapia, moving up from junior middleweight, was 159½ pounds.
Welterweight Mauricio Herrera (22-5, 7 KOs) weighed 145½ pounds for his 10-rounder against Frankie Gomez (20-0, 13 KOs), who was 146, an achievement, given that he has missed weight several times.
Patrick Teixeira (26-0, 22 KOs) weighed 159 pounds and former title challenger Curtis Stevens (27-5, 20 KOs) was 160 for their 10-round middleweight fight, which will open the pay-per-view telecast.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission released the purses for the fighters. Alvarez's base purse is $3.5 million, although he will earn many millions more from television revenue and profits from the promotion, as will Khan, whose base purse is $2 million.
Lemieux's purse is $200,000, and Tapia's is $150,000. Herrera is getting $175,000 to Gomez's $90,000, and Stevens is getting $65,000 to Teixeira's $50,000.