What’s Beef? Golovkin and Canelo
By: Kirk Jackson
Renowned Hip-Hop legend Notorious B.I.G. once posed the question in the form of a song, “What’s Beef?” from his Life After Death album.
While the conflict between Gennady ‘Triple G’ Golovkin and Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez presents different context and thankfully nothing to the extremes of what unfortunately unfolded between Tupac Shakur and The Notorious one, there is obvious animosity between the two camps.
Team Golovkin firing off shots. And ‘Canelo’ for his part, reminding Golovkin, “Mexicans don’t fuck around,” amply responded.
Look at what we have here. Genuine disgust and dislike between two parties. Drama unfolding in a dynamic storyline full of controversy with the potential for an even more provocative ending, dependent on a few variables.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission had its monthly meeting this past Wednesday, voting to uphold Alvarez’s suspension for failing two drug tests to six months.
The suspension kicks into effect the date of the initial failed drug test Feb. 17, lifting the suspension Aug 17, theoretically leaving just enough time for their highly anticipated rematch for September.
September also marks the anniversary of their initial encounter last year and September is a huge date for Golden Boy Promotions – fighters of Hispanic background featured to coincide with Mexican Independence weekend.
Alvarez underwent surgery to fix a minor ailment lingering in his knee, which makes sense given he has the free time now to do so.
“He had a cyst taken out of his knee,” Golden Boy Promotions President Eric Gomez clarified to ESPN on Friday night.
“It’s not an injury. Since the fight [with Gennady Golovkin] was canceled, now was the time for him to take care of it. It was something that has been bothering him. And so now, since he isn’t fighting, it was time to take care of it. But he would have been ready to fight on May 5 if there was a fight. There is no structural problem with his knee.”
Leaving room for September. If only Golovkin can manage to get past his opponent; Canelo’s replacement for May 5.
“Vanes Martirosyan is now the most important fight of my career,” Golovkin said.
“He has my respect, and I am training hard to defend my titles against him. I am happy to be back on HBO and fighting at StubHub Center because they have great boxing fans. I will give my fans another big drama show.”
By all appearances, this looks like a cherry-pick; granted this is a fight on short notice, but it’s not like Golovkin is without viable options.
The intention is not to discredit Martirosyan, as he is pitted in an impossible scenario, albeit a situation he volunteered for.
Martirosyan hasn’t fought in two years, his last fight a defeat to Erislandy Lara in the junior middleweight division. Martirosyan is now asked to face the best fighter pound-for-pound according to ESPN.
Other talented, qualified fighters are available for Golovkin.
IBF mandatory Sergiy Derevyanchenko 12-0 (10 KO’s) is a hungry contender and will be in prime position for the IBF strap if the sanctioning body strips Triple G of the title.
Undefeated former junior middleweight champion Demetrius Andrade 25-0 (16 KO’s) was another option, but unfortunately phased out of the equation.
The route for Golovkin appears to be the path with least resistance; a road quite familiar for one of boxing’s best fighters.
In spite of past success and earning three world titles, Triple G’s level of opposition was average until last year.
As Golovkin enters the final stage of his professional career, many questions remain.
Triple G is chasing the middleweight title defense record belonging to Bernard Hopkins and questions remain whether if he will surpass the record held by Hopkins, if he will travel the same path in regards to his ascension towards higher weight classes and if he’ll take on the young challengers aiming for the throne.
The middleweight division endured a lapse of overall talent for most of the decade, only recently experiencing a resurgence of talent with the emergence of Daniel Jacobs, Billie Joe Saunders, Jermall Charlo, Alvarez, Derevyanchenko and Andrade.
As we enter a burgeoning period of renaissance for the historic middleweight division, will Golovkin remain in the division to thwart off challengers and fellow champions alike?
Will he ascend to the higher weights, facing new challenges as the previous middleweight king before him?
Or is he on his way towards retirement, seeking one or two large paydays, aiming for further financial security?
If the latter option is the answer, securing one or two more fights with Canelo is on the menu for Triple G.
Fights with Alvarez will draw the most interest from the public because there is legitimate dislike between the camps. Controversy is involved and controversy sells.
Consequences from the ‘PED Scandal’ will incite interest, potentially magnifying the polarizing effect for Alvarez.
The drug test results along with the results from their fight dating back to last September created strong division amongst spectators and the narrative of good battling evil so-to-speak between two fighters (which is good theater).
Emotions continue to stir, will Golovkin and Alvarez meet in the ring again?
The Cold War Between De La Hoya and Mayweather
by B.A. Cass
In August, Oscar De La Hoya took to Twitter to voice his thoughts on the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight.
As a man of principle, De La Hoya was disgusted. He felt Mayweather was degrading the sport of boxing. Many boxing fans agreed.
How is it then that this man of principle could turn around not three months later and challenge McGregor to a fight? De La Hoya should be called out for his hypocrisy.
De La Hoya has made some ridiculous assertions in the past two weeks, such as he the idea that he’s in the best shape of his life. He also claims that he’s “faster than ever, and stronger than ever” and that he has been “secretly training.” His comments have prompted some Twitter users to question whether De La Hoya has had a drug or alcohol relapse. His behavior seems very erratic.
It’s no coincidence that several days after De La Hoya challenged McGregor to a fight Mayweather released a training video.
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) November 20, 2017
This video prompted people to speculate whether Mayweather was contemplating a return to the ring. He later made an emphatic statement reiterating his commitment to retirement. So then why tease people by releasing such a video? I think it’s obvious why. He’s trying to upstage De La Hoya.
This isn’t the first time Mayweather has teased us with a video of him working out. He released a similar video on October 18.
— Floyd Mayweather (@FloydMayweather) October 18, 2017
Perhaps this is something he does about once a month as a way of getting out of his Vegas strip club and staying relevant in the boxing world. But here’s an interesting fact: Mayweather posted this video the day after the press conference for the Cotto vs. Ali fight, which De La Hoya’s company, Golden Boy Promotions, happens to be promoting. Coincidence? Not a chance.
Their feud goes back a long way.
In his prime, Oscar De La Hoya was one of the biggest draws in the sport. He was a recognizable name, and he was very handsome. His fights attracted thousands upon thousands of fans and made the people who promoted his fights lots of money. Floyd Mayweather at 135 pounds—then still “Pretty Boy Floyd and not yet “Money Mayweather”—was a brilliant and often dangerous fighter. When he jumped up to 150 to fight Oscar De La Hoya, Mayweather did so knowing that De La Hoya would be the naturally bigger man. But Mayweather needed that fight, needed it way more than De La Hoya. Just by putting himself in the ring with De La Hoya, Mayweather elevated himself in the boxing world and gained more attention than he had ever had before.
In the lead up to their fight, Mayweather pulled a lot of antics—antics which would make McGregor’s recent antics seem boyish and dull. Mayweather did everything he could to taunt and confuse De La Hoya, including showing up to a press conference with a chicken who he said was De La Hoya and who he called the “Golden Girl,” alluding to the fact that De La Hoya was caught wearing women’s clothes at a sex party.
Mayweather won the fight handily. Over the years, De La Hoya has made every attempt possible to minimize Floyd’s obvious talents.
The two met in the ring again in 2013, this time by proxy. The fight I’m referring to is Mayweather vs. “Canelo” Alvarez. By this time, of course, De La Hoya was retired and running Golden Boy Promotions full time. Canelo was, and still remains, Golden Boy Promotion’s biggest draw. If De La Hoya could not beat Mayweather himself, then perhaps the number one fighter in his stable could.
That didn’t happen. Mayweather schooled a very youthful looking Canelo.
Win number two for Mayweather.
Mayweather and De La Hoya have since exchanged barbs. The animosity between them is palpable, even if they have been able to work together to promote fights. I’d like to posit that even though Mayweather has gotten the best of the De La Hoya at least twice, he has never liked the idea that the De La Hoya was at one time the bigger star. Mayweather chose to craft himself into boxing’s leading villain and De La Hoya, even after his many scandals, remains more beloved among boxing fans. And I think it’s obvious that De La Hoya has never liked the fact that he was beaten by Mayweather twice—once in person, once by proxy. He can’t seem to let it go.
Mayweather can’t seem to let his grudge go either.
Mayweather, as we all know, is not just a boxing star but a powerful figure behind the scenes. Mayweather promotions certainly had a say in determining when the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight would take place. And they chose a date just three weeks before the already scheduled fight between Canelo and GGG, which was one of the most anticipated fights in boxing. How can we view the date that they selected as anything but an attempt to upstage De La Hoya and Golden Goy Promotions fight between Canelo and GGG?
What’s going on here is nothing more than a battle between two middle-age men who can’t refrain from acting like little boys. They’ve never liked each other, and now it seems they’ve engaged in a cold war of sorts, a passive feud that no one really cares to witness.
Follow B.A. Cass on Twitter @WiththePunch