By: Sean Crose
Gennady Golovkin is said to be a bit uneasy about returning to Las Vegas to fight Canelo Alvarez in a rematch of their September 16th throwdown. Golovkin promoter Tom Loeffler recently spoke with MMA Junkie and claimed “there are some things we’d want to address if the fight goes back to Vegas.” One of those things, presumably, is some of the judging that goes down in Las Vegas’ fights. Judge Adalaide Byrd gave boxing yet another black eye when she ruled in favor of Canelo over Golovkin by a score of 118-110 after their much hyped – and exciting – superbout several weeks ago.
While there was little doubt the battle between the two middleweights was extremely close and perhaps even difficult to score, few, if any, felt like either fighter deserved to win by so wide a margin as the one given by Byrd. The whole thing proved to be a tough pill for many fans to swallow, one made even tougher by boxing’s history of unfair judging. With a rematch between Golovkin and Canelo appearing inevitable, some are openly stating that it will be hard for Golovkin to ever get a fair ruling in Las Vegas, a town with a reputation for playing favorites.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission swears by its own honor of course, but analysts, fans, and it seems Golovkin himself are rightfully suspicious. Speaking of the judging that night, Loeffler stated that “it’s just unfortunate that people are talking about the scoring instead of the fight itself.” Known as an even keeled sort, the soft spoken Loeffler’s statements speak volumes. Although the man didn’t outright condemn the city of Vegas for the actions of one judge, he made it clear that his camp has legitimate concerns heading into a rematch with the extremely popular Canelo.
“We won’t rule out Vegas,” the promoter admitted, “but I know there was some hesitation from the GGG side.” Speaking of his fighter, Loeffler claimed “he’s never had that issue when he’s fought in California or New York or even in London,” a clear shot to the way business, at least the boxing business, is done in Vegas. Needless to say, the judging of the Canelo-Golovkin fight added to several months of criticism for the Nevada State Athletic Commission, one which has seen the body accused of putting money before fighter safety in its embrace of last summer’s Mayweather-McGregor novelty bout. Complaints over ethics and basic fairness, however, have yet to keep the community known as Sin City from hosting the biggest fights in the world