Eddie Alvarez won huis bare knuckle boxing debut yesterday with a bit of help from a former opponent. Conor McGregor turned up at the 1stBank Centre in Broomfield to offer him some unsolicited advise from ringside.

At one point during the third round McGregor could be heard shouting ‘throw the uppercut’. Alvarez did just that, connecting clean to the chin of Chad Mendes and immediately pointed at the Irishman to acknowledge his input.

It was a bizarre turn of events with McGregor’s surprise appearance generating more interest than the actual fights. Him and Alvarez famously faced off at UFC 205 in one of the biggest pay per view cards the promotion has ever put on.

Flash knockdown

Alvarez won by split decision to claim his first win since 2019. His contract with ONE Championship was cancelled by mutual consent following an indifferent run of results.

Alvarez had hoped to return to the UFC but an offer was not forthcoming. Instead ‘The Underground King’ found himself returning to his roots with a bare knuckle boxing bout.

Mendes made the stronger start but was dropped by a left hand in the second round, although a count wasn’t given. Alvarez continued to find a home for the left in the third round with the fight swinging in the favour of the former UFC and Bellator lightweight champion.

Flash knockdown

The action slowed in a fairly even fourth round. But Alvarez picked up the pace in the final round and swarmed all over Mendes looking to find the finish.

With about a minute remaining Alvarez looked to turn the screw and trapped Mendes against the ropes landing hard punches to the body and head. He eventually dropped the former UFC featherweight title contender whose left eye appeared to bear the brunt of the onslaught.

Mendes beat the count and had recovered sufficiently to take the fight to Alvarez. They traded punches and the former UFC lightweight champion was dropped with the referee electing to give him a count despite the fact that he bounced back up instantly.

It seemed that the flash knockdown might have been enough to win Mendes the fight. But the judges didn’t see it that way scoring the contest 47-46, 47-46, 46-47 in Alvarez’ favour.

Afterwards Alvarez acknowledged that he had taken McGregor’s advice but questioned whether it had been meant for him

“I did something and I said ‘good job’ to him but I heard that he was telling him (Chad Mendes) stuff so I think he was playing both sides.”