Kovalev trims weight, set to face Canelo on Sat.

LAS VEGAS — Canelo Alvarez didn’t seem to have any worries at all after light heavyweight world titleholder Sergey Kovalev was initially overweight for their bout at the weigh-in Friday inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Alvarez, the reigning middleweight world champion, is moving up two weight classes from 160 pounds to 175 to challenge Kovalev with the goal of winning a title in a fourth division. So it was no surprise that the smaller Alvarez, who drew cheers from the heavily Mexican crowd, easily made weight at a shredded 174.5 pounds.

Then Kovalev stepped on the scale and was 175.25 pounds. By Nevada State Athletic Commission rules, he had one hour to shed the excess quarter of a pound. After Alvarez and Kovalev posed for photos and the traditional staredown, Kovalev left the stage to cut the small amount of weight and Alvarez lingered, seemingly without a care in the world.

He drank in the adulation from the crowd and playfully held and kissed his baby daughter, who was decked out in a white, red and green outfit to match her dad’s.

Three-time world titleholder Kovalev, a light heavyweight for his entire 10-year career, needed only six minutes — plenty of time to hit the restroom — before he returned to the scale and weighed 175 pounds, and assured that he will be able to defend his title for the second time when he and Alvarez square off Saturday (DAZN, 9 p.m. ET) at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in one of the year’s biggest fights.

Although Alvarez (52-1-2, 35 KOs) did not seek a catch weight for the bout in order to drain Kovalev from his natural fighting weight, there is a rehydration clause in the contract, multiple sources with knowledge of the details told ESPN. The fighters are required to submit to a weight check on Saturday morning at which neither man can weigh more than 185 pounds, one source said. There are severe financial penalties if either man is over.

Kovalev (34-3-1, 29 KOs) is used to weight checks on the morning of fights from his days of holding the IBF world title, because that organization requires them.

Alvarez, who has won titles at junior middleweight, middleweight and super middleweight, began his career as a 139-pound teen and has boxed above 160 pounds only twice, his shutout of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. at 164 pounds in 2017 and his secondary super middleweight title win (weighing 167 pounds), a third-round stoppage of Rocky Fielding in December.

But he looked to be in supreme condition and like he belonged in his new weight division.

“I feel very well, I feel very strong,” he said through an interpreter after stepping off the scale. “We will see at the fight how my body really is, but I believe in my physical strength and my physical capacities.”

Alvarez said he targeted Kovalev to fight because he is the biggest name in the division and has a world title.

“He is No. 1 in this division, and I want to have that title. I want to have my fourth title in this division,” said Alvarez, who can become the fourth Mexican to claim a belt in a fourth weight class and the second Mexican to win a light heavyweight title. He can also become the fourth fighter ever to win a junior middleweight title and one at light heavyweight.

Lightweights Ryan Garcia (18-0, 15 KOs) and Romero Duno (21-1, 16 KOs) were both right on the division limit of 135 pounds for their scheduled 12-round co-feature.

Seniesa Estrada (17-0, 7 KOs) was 110.5 pounds and Marlen Esparza (7-0, 1 KO) was 111 — both slightly under the 112-pound limit — for their vacant interim women’s flyweight world title bout.

Welterweight Blair Cobbs (12-0-1, 8 KOs) was on the division limit of 147 and Carlos Ortiz (11-4, 11 KOs) was 146 for their 10-round bout.

Junior middleweight Evan Holyfield, flanked by his famous father, former four-time heavyweight world titleholder Evander Holyfield, was on the division limit of 154 pounds for his professional debut and Nick Winstead (0-1) was 154.5 pounds for a bout contracted at 155.

Junior middleweight Bakhram Murtazaliev (16-0, 13 KOs) was 154 pounds and Jorge Fortea (20-1-1, 6 KOs) was 153.5 for their world title elimination bout that will secure the winner mandatory challenger status for unified titleholder Julian “J Rock” Williams.

Also, the Nevada State Athletic Commission released the official contract purses for the card. Alvarez will earn $35 million, the total he is due under his exclusive deal with DAZN. Kovalev’s purse is a career-high $3 million, although he is guaranteed millions more from the $12.5 million package Alvarez promoter Golden Boy is paying promoter Main Events. Garcia, in the first fight of a recently hammered-out contract extension with Golden Boy, will earn $250,000, Duno will make $50,000, Murtazaliev $55,000, Fortea $20,000, Estrada $50,000 and Esparza $50,000.