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Kenny Bayless, who has worked dozens of title fights and is widely considered one of the best referees in the world, was appointed Wednesday to work the biggest fight of the year.
At the Nevada State Athletic Commission's monthly meeting, Bayless was assigned to referee the junior middleweight unification fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez on Sept. 14 (Showtime PPV) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
The Nevada commission also assigned the judges for the fight -- Dave Moretti and C.J. Ross of Nevada and Craig Metcalfe of Canada -- as well as the officials for the other two world title fights on the card.
Bayless will be working his fourth fight involving Mayweather (44-0, 26 KOs). He served as the third man in the ring for Mayweather's one-sided decision victory against Shane Mosley in 2010, as well as Mayweather's pay-per-view record-smashing fight against Oscar De La Hoya in 2007. The other fight was Mayweather's professional debut in 1996 against Robert Apodaca.
Bayless will be working a fight involving Alvarez (42-0-1, 30 KOs) for the first time.
Referee Tony Weeks was assigned to the co-feature in which unified junior welterweight titleholder Danny Garcia will square off against interim titlist Lucas Matthysse. Weeks has never worked a Matthysse fight, but he refereed Garcia's fifth professional fight in 2008 – a first-round knockout win. The judges for the bout are Robert Hoyle and Glen Trowbridge, both of Nevada, and Juergen Langos of Germany.
For the third title bout on the card -- Ishe Smith (25-5, 11 KOs) in his first title defense against mandatory challenger Carlos Molina (21-5-2, 6 KOs) -- Jay Nady was assigned as the referee. The judging panel will be Adalaide Byrd and Burt Clements, both of Nevada, and Barry Druxman of California.