By: Sean Crose
Iconic boxer turned heavyweight promoter Oscar De La Hoya predicted on ESPNs First Take that this weekend’s Canelo Alvarez-Gennady Golovkin superbout will be “bombs away right from the start.” He then went on to compare Saturday’s match to the legendary 1985 middleweight battle between Marvelous Marvin Hagler and Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns. It’s been rightfully said that particular classic (this author’s personal all-time favorite sporting event, much less boxing match) will be hard to match, and indeed such an assertion seems to be true. Yet there appears to be more to De La Hoya’s words than just standard promotional hype.
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan/Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions
Make no mistake about it, Canelo-GGG is the single biggest fight in combat sports. Last month’s Mayweather-McGregor shindig may well have been the hottest pop culture event of 2017, but Canelo-GGG is most certainly the year’s most significant fight. What’s more, the style of each combatant means there’s a real potential for fireworks. Both these guys can turn off the lights. Sure enough, between the two combatants – who will meet at the T-Mobile arena in Las Vegas on Saturday night – there have been a total of at least fifteen knockouts in the past five years alone. And now they’re going to face each other.
In truth, De La Hoya has taken heat from fans and the media for not making Canelo-GGG sooner. The common argument went that, since Canelo was De La Hoya’s star fighter, a fight with the feared Golovkin could potentially damage De La Hoya’s cash cow. With the fight now just days away, however, and the mainstream media reporting on the match regularly during the final leadup, such criticism has largely evaporated. And, after openly bashing the Mayweather-McGregor fight for what some fight watchers felt like was forever, De La Hoya has once again returned his focus to this weekend’s big event.
Naturally, the promoter, who himself was the biggest name in boxing during his prime, picked his man, Canelo to win. Being a good promoter, however, De La Hoya also predicted “nine or ten rounds of hell.” That may not end up being the case, as both Canelo and Golovkin know how to play chess as well as they know how to fire howitzers, but again, the potential for fireworks is definitely there and De La Hoya wouldn’t be doing his job if he didn’t hype that potentiality to the media and fans.