He’s never faced a striker like Pettis
This is another easy one, as Alvarez has simply never faced off with a dynamic stand-up artist like UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis.
Pettis will square off with No. 1 contender Gilbert Melendez at December 6’s UFC 181, and if “Showtime” returns from a torn PCL to dispatch “El Nino” in his first title defense, Alvarez could be in line for shot at the belt should he beat Cerrone impressively.
If that fight happens, Alvarez will be in for a challenge of a completely unknown kind, one that will take him into dangerous and uncharted waters. Knocking out opposition like Shinya Aoki and Patricky Freire is one thing, standing with a diverse and powerful striker like Pettis is another.
He does have very solid boxing and kickboxing, but Alvarez will definitely have to up his striking game if he wants to realistically contend with the blazing fast Pettis.