By Sean Crose
Freddie Roach has claimed that Saul Canelo Alvarez trained at his gym in preparation for three matches. Roach also claims that he wasn’t all that impressed with Canelo, that indeed he thought the young man from Mexico wasn’t particularly “dedicated.” During a conference call on Tuesday to discuss his upcoming superfight with Miguel Cotto, however, Canelo claimed through an interpreter, that he has no recollection of training at Roach’s gym at all.
“To my recollection,” he stated, “I’ve never been to Freddie Roach’s gym.”
This, of course, can mean one of three things. Either someone is lying, someone truly has a horrendous memory, or words got screwed up in translation. Sure enough, Tuesday’s call was an oftentimes chaotic affair, with Canelo’s words having to be interpreted, sometimes with difficulty, for those who spoke English. A mistake, then, could have been made. Then again, maybe someone really is lying here. Or perhaps Canelo truly doesn’t remember stepping through the doors of the most famous boxing trainer on the planet’s gym.
Perhaps, though, there’s something else at play. Perhaps a young, inexperienced Canelo once trained at an LA gym whose illustrious owner didn’t register with him. The young Canelo may have been to many gyms in the area, after all, so this was simply one of countless others for him at the time. Perhaps, also, Roach watched Canelo train from afar and didn’t have any real contact with the young man.
No matter what the truth is, it’s clear Roach and Canelo are quite familiar with one another now. For Cotto is now famously a Freddie Roach fighter. That means Roach is prepping his man to give Canelo a second loss. It’s a threat Canelo isn’t taking lightly.
“It’s a very difficult fight,” Canelo admitted during the call. “It’s a fifty-fifty fight and the training will have a lot to do with it.”
While it’s true Canelo respects his competition, he certainly isn’t in fear of the Puerto Rican legend, Cotto. “Styles make fights,” he said. “Cotto might have done better against Mayweather, however I did better against Austin Trout.”
True enough. Will Canelo be able to withstand all that Cotto brings to the ring, however? There’s a lot of experience packed into the middleweight kingpin, after all. “I prepare for different styles,” Canelo claimed, later adding that “We have a plan for success in the ring.”
One other hot topic that came up was fellow middleweight Gennady Golovkin. Fans have recently been disappointed to hear that, provided he beat Cotto, Canelo only wants to face GGG, as he’s called, at a catchweight. When pointedly asked about whether or not the catchweight talk initiated with him, however, the red haired superstar became elusive.
“Whatever happens after this fight,” he said, “happens after this fight.”