by: Sean Crose
“I don’t think it’s imperative,” Gennady Golovkin trainer Abel Sanchez said to me during a Wednesday conference call to promote his fighter’s September 15th rematch with Canelo Alvarez. I had just asked the noted corner man if he felt Golovkin needed to knock Canelo out in order to win fairly in Las Vegas, a town with a reputation, fair or not, for bias when it comes to boxing. “I think the onus and the microscope is on the judges,” Sanchez added. There’s no doubt the three judges: Dave Moretti, Glenn Feldman, and Steve Wisefield, will be in the spotlight. The first Golovkin-Canelo clash, which went down last year, ended in an insanely controversial draw (most felt Golovkin deserved the nod).
Since that time, matters have only gotten more controversial, as Canelo was suspended for testing positive for the banned substance Clenbuterol last winter. Canelo blamed the incident on tainted meat. No matter. The Golovkin rematch, which was supposed to happen in May, was pushed back to September, and Canelo’s reputation has subsequently taken a considerable hit. Also of note is the fact that the relationship between the two fighter’s camps, which was previously cordial and professional, has deteriorated considerably. “There have been no insults on our side,” said Sanchez. “Everything I said has been the truth…they’ve been the ones with the insults.”
When asked if he would apologize to Canelo, who team Golovkin has been publicly critical of since the clenbuterol revelation, Sanchez remained firm. “No, I wouldn’t apologize,” Sanchez said. “He (Canelo) tested positive. Why should I apologize?” Sanchez was also asked about a report that Canelo would not shake his hand in the ring. “I will make an effort (to shake Canelo’s hand),” said Sanchez. “That’s what adults do….if he doesn’t want to, that’s okay. That’s what children do.” It was clear on the call that there was a notable amount of bad blood between both camps. Canelo’s trainers, the father-son team Chepo and Eddie Reynoso, were quick to defend their fighter. “There’s nothing to show,” Reynoso said when asked if Canelo now had something to prove. “Canelo’s career has always been clear.”
Sanchez would beg to differ. “Of course I’m mad (about the failed test),” the trainer said. “These things did happen. We cannot sweep this under the rug.” Sanchez may be put off, but he stated he has no intention to bring his emotions into the T-Mobile arena come fight night. “Emotions,” he argued, “never get in the way…I’ve got a job to do.”