Daniel Jacobs To Fight Canelo Alvarez As Part Of Three Fight Deal
By: Sean Crose
Canelo Alvarez, the biggest fighter in the world today, will be facing a top opponent in Daniel Jacobs on a major card to be aired live on the DAZN streaming service this May 4th, Cinco De Mayo weekend. Canelo-Jacobs, which perfectly fits the bill of a Pay Per View fight, will be seen for free by DAZN subscribers. It’s all a part of a three fight deal Brooklyn’s Jacobs has inked with DAZN and promoter Eddie Hearn.
“This is the opportunity I have been waiting for,” Jacobs says. “The opportunity to achieve greatness inside the ring, I have always believed I can beat Canelo, and on May 4 live on DAZN, I will get my chance to play it out. It’s been nearly four years since Canelo has faced an American challenger. It’s going to be a huge event where I believe I will cement myself as the best middleweight in the division.”
Jacobs, who fought an impressive battle against Gennady Golovkin in March of 2017, will be stepping into the biggest fight of his career. Although many felt Jacobs won the Golovkin fight, Golovkin walked away with a controversial decision win. Golovkin then went on to fight Canelo twice, drawing once and losing once, both in controversial fashion. With a third Canelo-GGG fight apparently not happening (at least for the time being) a very interesting throwdown between Canelo and Jacobs now awaits.
For the Canelo-Jacobs match will essentially decide who the top fighter is in the middleweight division. Three out of the four major belts are at stake, along with the Ring Magazine lineal championship. Although the location of the match has yet to be announced, Las Vegas might look to be a sure thing, with New York and Dallas also being in the running. “What a fight!,” says Jacob’s promoter, Hearn. “I can’t tell you how happy I am that Danny Jacobs gets this opportunity to fight Canelo on Cinco de Mayo in a massive unification fight.”
Although Canelo-Jacobs is a top level bout by anyone’s standards, the fact that it is the first truly major match to be aired on DAZN makes the pairing particularly intriguing. “On any other network or platform, Canelo vs. Jacobs would be an expensive pay-per-view,” Joseph Markowski, DAZN EVP of North America, says. “At DAZN, we believe the best fights should be available to our subscribers at no extra charge.”
Jacobs has stayed busy since the Golovkin fight, earning the IBF middleweight title by besting Sergiy Derevyanchenko last fall. Canelo, on the other hand, won the WBC and WBA titles via his win over Golovkin in September. The WBO middleweight strap is held by Demetrius Andrade, who will be fighting Artur Akavov this Friday in New York in a match to be aired live on DAZN. One of the reasons the signing of Jacobs to DAZN is so significant is that now every major titlist in the middleweight division fights on the streaming service. That means a battle for all the major belts and titles could very well arrive in the near future.
The missing piece to all this is, of course, Golovkin, who has not declared what his next move will be now that HBO, which regularly hosted his fights, is out of the boxing business.
Canelo Alvarez to Face Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs in Middleweight Unification Bout
Boxing’s biggest star will take a step closer to becoming undisputed champion as Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) defends his WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Titles in a 12-round unification fight against IBF Middleweight World Champion Daniel “Miracle Man” Jacobs (35-2, 29 KOs) during the celebratory weekend of Cinco de Mayo. The champion-vs.-champion event will take place Saturday, May 4, 2019 and will be streamed exclusively live on DAZN.
Additional details for the event, including venue and ticket information, will be announced shortly.
Canelo is a 28-year-old native of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico who became the top man in the sport by facing the best competition and making the best fights for the fans. At 154 pounds, Canelo captured several world titles and defeated the likes of Austin “No Doubt” Trout, Sugar Shane Mosley, Alfredo “El Perro” Angulo, Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara and Liam “Beefy” Smith. However, Canelo scored his most significant victory yet at 160 pounds, where he defeated Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in their highly anticipated rematch in September 2018 and established himself as the WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion. Canelo then made history by signing the most lucrative sports contract for an athlete in history to begin a groundbreaking, exclusive partnership with global sports streaming platform DAZN that saw the last king of pay-per-view boxing step into a new era as the new king of sports streaming.
In his debut performance, Canelo became a three-division world champion by knocking out Rocky Fielding in three rounds to capture the WBA Super Middleweight World Title in December 2018. Canelo will return to middleweight for this fight as he continues to clean out the 160-pound division.
“I’m happy to announce my next fight during the festive weekend of Cinco de Mayo,” said Canelo Alvarez. “I will unify my middleweight titles against Daniel Jacobs on one of the two most important dates that belong to me. I have no doubt that I will be victorious and that I’ll be one step away from becoming the undisputed middleweight world champion. And what better way to watch it than on as tremendous a platform as DAZN.”
Jacobs is a 31-year-old native of Brooklyn, New York who is widely considered as one of the best middleweights of this era. Despite being away from the sport for 19 months, due to a form of bone cancer that he courageously overcame, Jacobs rose up the middleweight rankings to win the WBA Middleweight World Title against Jarrod Fletcher in 2014. Jacobs made several successful defenses, including a thunderous first-round knockout of Peter Quillin the following year. Despite losing to Gennady Golovkin in a very close fight in 2017, Jacobs has remained undefeated since his return, defeating former amateur champion and middleweight contender Sergiy Derevyanchenko to capture the IBF Middleweight World Championship. Jacobs will look to capture more middleweight hardware in the biggest fight of his career.
“This is the opportunity I have been waiting for. The opportunity to achieve greatness inside the ring,” said Daniel Jacobs. “I have always believed I can beat Canelo, and on May 4 live on DAZN, I will get my chance to play it out. It’s been nearly four years since Canelo has faced an American challenger. It’s going to be a huge event where I believe I will cement myself as the best middleweight in the division.”
Canelo Alvarez wants the best fights and the biggest challenges,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “That’s what he did as the 154-pound champion, and that’s what he’s doing now as the king of the middleweight division. We are also proud to demonstrate to boxing fans that this new partnership with DAZN means that fans will get pay-per-view level fights without the cost of pay-per-view. Golden Boy Promotions is continuing its promise to make the sport as accessible as possible by putting this champion-vs.-champion fight on the platform.”
“What a fight! I can’t tell you how happy I am that Danny Jacobs gets this opportunity to fight Canelo on Cinco de Mayo in a massive unification fight,” said Eddie Hearn, Managing Director of Matchroom Sport. “Victory would cap one of the most incredible, inspirational boxing stories of our generation, and Danny and the team will be putting everything in place to lead him to victory. Respect to Canelo and Golden Boy for accepting this challenge, and congratulations to DAZN and their subscribers for getting this incredible fight with no extra cost. Let’s go May 4! Let’s go Daniel Jacobs!”
“On any other network or platform, Canelo vs. Jacobs would be an expensive pay-per-view,” said Joseph Markowski, DAZN EVP of North America. “At DAZN, we believe the best fights should be available to our subscribers at no extra charge.”
Canelo vs. Jacobs is a 12-round fight for the WBC, WBA, Lineal, Ring Magazine and IBF Middleweight World Titles presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Matchroom Boxing. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING” and Hennessy “Never Stop. Never Settle.” The event will take place Saturday, May 4, 2019 and will be streamed live on DAZN.
For more information, visit www.goldenboypromotions.com, http://www.matchroomboxing.com, and DAZN.com. Follow on Twitter @GoldenBoyBoxing, @Canelo, @DanielJacobsTKO, @MatchRoomBoxing, and @DAZN_USA. Become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GoldenBoyBoxing, www.facebook.com/SaulCaneloAlvarez, www.facebook.com/MatchroomBoxing and https://www.facebook.com/DAZNUSA/. Follow on Instagram @GoldenBoyBoxing, @Canelo, @DanielJacobsTKO, @MatchroomBoxing
Canelo vs. GGG, Cinco de Mayo?
By: Michael Kane
The first fight ended in a controversial draw, the second a controversial win, this year we could see the trilogy completed.
Early discussions have taken place between Golden Boy Promotions and Gennady Golovkin’s representatives for a third fight between GGG and Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.
Canelo signed with DAZN last year in a record breaking deal and it seemed we might not see a third fight materialise however with HBO no longer covering boxing, GGG is in a position where he can sign with a new promoter/TV company.
The UK Sun newspaper said today in article that GGG has also now signed with DAZN, however no other outlet has yet stated this as fact.
Speaking with ESPN Houston, Golden Boy Promotions supremo said, “Canelo Alvarez is fighting two to three times this year, and fighting the very best.
“Last night, I had preliminary talks with Golovkin’s people. So we threw it out there about fighting for a third time.
“Cinco de Mayo is the biggest weekend in boxing in Las Vegas, so we’re starting talks. Canelo is open to anything.
“Canelo is a fighter who wants to fight anybody to be great, and so a third fight is a possibility. We’re starting discussions, and we’ll see where it leads from there,” De La Hoya said.
De La Hoya added, “A lot of pride is at stake, Canelo’s a proud fighter, therefore he fights the very best all the time.”
The fight between the pair last year was considered one of the best of the year, it was also the highest boxing PPV of the year and second biggest PPV behind UFC 229.
The first fight in 2017 ended in a controversial draw, when a lot of people felt GGG had won it. Last year’s bout ended up in a win for Canelo in a fight that was more deserving of a drawn outcome than the first one.
The talks have come a few days after Frank Warren said that he has reached out to GGG for a fight against former world champion Billy Joe Saunders.
“We signed for the fight twice, they sent contracts and we signed them and sent them back,” Warren told the Pound for Pound podcast.
“Will they want that fight with no belts on the line? Maybe money will talk. And, in fact, my son spoke to Tom Loefller today so we’re exploring that.
“We want to make the fight, it would be a fantastic fight.”
If GGG v Canelo can’t be worked out, then Canelo could face IBF middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs.
Could it be third time lucky for GGG?
What’s Next for Former Middle Champ Gennady “GGG” Golovkin?
By: Ken Hissner
Going into 2017 Gennady “GGG” Golovkin was considered one of the best P4P boxers in the world if not the best. He had scored 21 straight stoppages and was 36-0 (33) when he defended against Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs 33-1 (29) in March of 2017.
Jacobs refused to come to the day of the fight weigh-in. Golovkin had gained ten pounds that day coming in at 170 lbs. Rumors were Jacobs was between 180-185 lbs. when he entered the ring that night. Another surprise was he fought the fight southpaw.
Though a close fight, Golovkin got the decision by scores of 114-113 and 115-112 twice. The WBC was in no hurry to order a rematch that Jacobs could have asked for but didn’t push for it.
The WBO and WBC World Super Welterweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, then 48-1-1, who had rarely weighed over 155 lbs. during his entire career was being groomed for a shot at 160 lbs. His promoter Oscar de La Hoya decided he should fight Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr., 50-2-1, at super middleweight with both fighters coming in at 164 lbs. Alvarez won every one of the twelve rounds on all three score cards and Chavez hasn’t fought since.
It was decided by Alvarez’s promoter to take on WBC, WBA and IBF world champion Golovkin in Las Vegas which was a “second home” for Alvarez who fought there in seven of his previous nine fights only losing to Floyd “Money” Mayweather. It had been a year to the day since Alvarez defended his two titles defeating Liam Smith by knockout while receiving a fractured right thumb and received a cut.
The fight with Golovkin didn’t make a lot of sense except financially for the state of Nevada, the promoter (Golden Boy) and both fighters. Alvarez may have been ahead after five rounds winning three of them. Suddenly when the sixth round started Alvarez had enough of trading punches with the hard hitting Golovkin and ran the next seven rounds. If Golovkin had run like Alvarez they would have called him “chicken” but Alvarez seemed to get a free pass.
At the end of the bout the scores were announced as 118-110 by one judge Adalaide Byrd. Had she actually watched the fight? Afterwards there was a rumor she would be under temporary suspension but it never happened. Byrd was a Nevada resident and a “house” judge. Another judge Dave Moretti scored it 115-113 for Golovkin. Close but still it was a fair decision going to the obvious winner. Then the third judge Don Trella came up with a 114-114 score giving Alvarez a “gift draw” with the WBC ordering a rematch between Alvarez and Golovkin that would make Nevada and Golden Boy richer. The fight with Jacobs was closer for Golovkin than the Alvarez match but no one ordered a rematch after that one. This writer had it 116-112 for Golovkin and being generous to Alvarez in their first match.
Then it was found that Alvarez was using a banned substance and yet he stayed in the rankings. How in the world was he then taken off suspension and given a title fight? It took a year before the rematch came about with Alvarez inactive and Golovkin having one match knocking out forty fight veteran and former Olympian Vanes Martirosyan in two rounds being the only time he was stopped and hasn’t fought since.
So, in September the rematch between Golovkin and Alvarez happened. Golovkin was satisfied boxing Alvarez almost at will landing his jab. His trainer told Golovkin to go and take it to him but Golovkin didn’t follow his instructions. Then came the decision with Moretti back as one of the judges along with well-regarded Steve Weisfeld calling it for Alvarez 115-113. Glen Feldman the other judge had it 114-114. The IBO didn’t recognize the fight since Alvarez wouldn’t pay their fee. This writer had it 115-113 for Golovkin.
To avoid a rubber match Alvarez moved up to take on ordinary WBA World Super Middle champ Rocky Fielding with a built-up 27-1 record stopping him in three rounds. Afterwards Alvarez said he had no intentions to stay at super middleweight. He even fought this one at MSG where he wouldn’t fight Golovkin figuring he wouldn’t have the protection that the Nevada commission and the WBC would give him.
The WBC goes out of their way not insisting on a third Alvarez-Golovkin fight but tells Golovkin to fight interim champ Jermall Charlo. Since when does an organization tell a non-champion who to fight? If Alvarez isn’t fighting Golovkin then why didn’t the WBC tell Alvarez, not Golovkin to fight Charlo? The WBA dropped Golovkin to No. 2 behind David Lemieux whom Golovkin has stopped in eight rounds in one of his title defenses. Lemieux had even lost in a title challenge for the WBO title since being stopped by Golovkin.
This is more than a conspiracy against Golovkin with the Nevada Commission, Golden Boy and the WBC behind it. So where does Golovkin go from here? Rumors have him signing with the DAZN as did Alvarez recently. A title fight with new WBO World champion Demetrius Andrade who claims to want to fight Golovkin in the past would make more sense. Even a rematch with Jacobs who now has the IBF title would make sense. The IBF had the nerve to rank Golovkin No. 10.
It seems the WBC, WBA and IBF all have it out for Golovkin while the WBO had never ranked him. Maybe Golovkin should drop to 154 lbs. or go up to 168 lbs. where in the past he said he could fight. Fighting for the vacant WBC title or the WBA super middle title that Alvarez said he won’t defend. There are many options for Golovkin but it seems if he doesn’t knock out his opponent he can’t win a decision.
One thing for sure Golovkin should never fight in Las Vegas again where he cannot get a fair decision.
Alvarez to Unify Super Middleweight Division in 2019?
By: Daniel Smith
Alvarez, to unify Super Middleweight division 2019?
Last night at the Garden, Canelo Alvarez was razor sharp, formidable and devastatingly accurate as he peppered Rocky Fielding with a torrent pounding and punishing body shots to force the stoppage within three rounds of boxing.
Photo Credit: DAZN Twitter Account
Fielding struggled to ignite the engine, let alone move out of first gear as Canelo smothered, suffocated and obliterated the Liverpudlian’s offence and game-plan by deploying his brutal artillery throughout the rounds.
Meticulously targeting and thudding away at Fielding’s long, skinny flank; dishing-out lightning-bolt shots to the liver, one after the other, relentlessly zapping the former WBA champion into submission without even breaking a sweat. Incidently, whether it’s Tyson Fury or Anthony Joshua, a sickening shot to the liver ultimately instructs the body to take a knee, no matter how big, bulky or solidly conformed you are – so no discredit to Rocky in that regard.
Although it was the Mexican who stepped up a weight-class; it certainly seemed as though Rocky Fielding was the one who’d brought a knife to gun fight, as every attack and combination he fired-out seemed fruitless.
So what’s next for the cinnamon-haired, super middleweight smasher? After skillfully bulldozing through the division’s WBA champion with such ease and cool; could Canelo continue on his 168lb division ascent and lay down the gauntlet for a clash with the WBA and WBSS champion, Callum Smith? A fight with Smith would be a an electrifying clash, an enticing prospect with another belt to add his collection, but ultimately, it would be a gruelling night’s work for the now, three weight-class champion.
There may be other fish to fry in the division such as WBO Gilberto Ramirez, IBF Jose Uzcategui and WBC David Benavidez. Or, alternatively, he could have a third dance with GGG which I’m sure would rake-in the fans and financial spoils.
Who knows? But one thing’s certain – 2019 will be explosive.
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez: What Are the Options for Him Next?
By: Waqas Ali
Mexican superstar and world champion ‘Canelo’ Alvarez delivered a stunning performance when he knocked out Rocky Fielding in three rounds at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.
The bout which was attended by over 20,000 spectators in attendance was for Fielding’s WBA ‘Regular’ title which is the minor version of the belt.
British world champion Callum Smith holds the ‘Super’ version of the belt.
Photo Credit: DAZN Twitter Account
Alvarez making his first bout under the 168 pound weight limit/ super-middleweight, started fighting on the inside with Fielding and connecting immense haymakers to the head and body.
Fielding who had the height advantage of 6 feet 1 inches and the reach of 75 inches did not utilise the range and distance of the fight and therefore paid the price.
Each round consisted of a knockdown of Fielding tasting the canvas. Courtesy of body shots.
But now the question remains is what opponent is next for Alvarez (51-1-2)? Is it back to 160 or staying at 168?
Canelo’s promoter, Oscar De La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions, believes his boxer is now fully capable of competing against anyone at middleweight or super middleweight.
Canelo will return to the ring on Cinco De Mayo weekend in Las Vegas.
“Canelo fighting at 168 showed he can fight at either 168 or 160. We’ve already set aside the T-Mobile Arena for Cinco de Mayo in Las Vegas. We have no opponent whatsoever – zero. We’re not thinking of nobody,” De La Hoya said.
“We’re going to enjoy the holidays and enjoy our families. After the holidays, as a team, we’ll collectively determine who Canelo is going to fight. Whether it’s 168 or 160, there are plenty of challenges out there for Canelo.”
Should he jump back to 160, one of the opponents which could be a good match up for him in terms of styles and techniques is Demetrius Andrade. His record consists of 26 wins (16 KOs) and zero defeats.
In the amateurs, he defeated future world champions like Keith Thurman, Austin Trout and Daniel Jacobs.
The 30-year-old, who holds the WBO middleweight belt has a great sense of style of being cautionary with his combinations and as a southpaw can be a limit for his conventional opponents on landing their jab. His body movement is a positive asset, considering the fact that he is able to move away from any return shots.
Alvarez has not faced a competitive southpaw with lateral foot movement since Erislandy Lara in July 2014 in which he only landed five jabs out of his 97 landing total. A bout with these two would be interesting.
Another opponent is Daniel Jacobs (35 W, 29 KOs – 2 L). His knockout ratio stands at 78%. Jacobs, who holds the IBF middleweight belt, has great utilisation of speed, power and versatility.
He is able to provide thrilling excessiveness of combinations and has rapid foot movement. Likewise with Andrade, this effect of foot movement, quickness of punches and by keeping the range, can be a great effect on their behalf.
His resume of credible opponents consist of, Ishe Smith, Caleb Truax, Sergio Mora (twice), Peter Quillin, Dmitry Pirog & Gennady Golovkin.
In the 168 division, one of the opponents that could be a good match for him is Gilberto Ramirez. He has an exceptional record of 39 victories with zero defeats.
He is the current WBO super-middleweight title champion and has defended his belt six times. He stands at 6 feet 2 ½ inches with at 75 inch reach.
Ramirez is known for his long reach and power. He’s more of a 12-rounded fighter and is able mix and match up his punches. In his last 10 bouts, eight of them were decision wins and only two by stoppages.
His two notable opponents Arthur Abraham, whom he beat for the title and Jesse Hart twice.
Another opponent is Callum Smith. The Liverpool-born fighter has a record of 25 wins and no defeats.
He’s also tall with a height 6 feet 3 inches and a reach advantage of 78 inches. Smith is known for his active punching ability and body shots. Ironically, body shots are also favouritism of Alvarez’s punching of expertise.
Especially the left hook to the body.
This style of fighting could be compatible between the two, considering the height similarity between Fielding and Smith. It could be a question of, could Alvarez wear down the taller man of Smith? How would they react to each other’s body shots?
His notable opponents that he defeated are Rocky Fielding & George Groves.
The final opponent of my choosing is Gennady Golovkin. There is no need to describe the power and chin of him. An exceptional power ratio of 87% and known for activeness, punching ability, calculating puncher and haymaker hunting.
He had a 23 knockout win streak dating from June 2008 – March 2017.
Both fights with Alvarez were close in their respected styles and performances.
With a potential trilogy with GGG, Alvarez stated:
“For me, I feel like on September 15, I showed that I was best. But it was two great fights and if the people want it, we can make it.”
According to a poll conducted by Editinking, out of 6,700 plus voters 49% of them picked Gennady Golovkin to fight Alvarez and 32% of them picked Daniel Jacobs.
Who next for Canelo?
— EditinKing Boxing (@EditinKing) December 16, 2018
With regards to what Alvarez’s future he stated:
“We’ll have to see. I have to talk to my team, enjoy the holiday and then I’ll talk to my team. But right now, without a doubt, what I want are the best fights.”
Jamie Moore Explains Why Canelo Had to Have His Hands Wrapped Twice
By: Michael Kane
Rocky Fielding put his WBA Super Middleweight title on the line on Saturday against Mexican superstar Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.
Ultimately it was not Fielding’s night as he was knocked down four times in the three rounds that he contested as Canelo added a world title at a third weight division.
However Fielding’s coach, British coach of the year, Jamie Moore was unhappy with Canelo and his team before the fight due to how much tape was being used.
Photo Credit: Golden Boy Promotions Twitter Account
Moore told Boxing News, “As you can imagine because of the superstar he is, he gets the rub of the green. I’d seen somebody getting wrapped up on DAZN, they put it on Twitter, I’d seen it earlier on and I said that’s not right in this state. They were wrapping the tape numerous times round the wrist and hand. It’s stacking, you’re not allowed to do it. We raised it as an issue, the commission agreed, said, ‘No, you’re right, you can’t do it.’ I sent Nige [Nigel Travis] in and Nige got there, they’d already done it. So made them take it off, said you’re not allowed to do that. The commission agreed to take it off and then they done it again. No, take it off again. So they started going crazy. Sent five people into my room saying take the tape off his hand, I said no problem, I don’t want tape on.”
“We knew we were going to walk into those sort of situations when we were coming here so we weren’t surprised. But Nige did the exact right thing. He didn’t bow to them,” Moore continued. “He went out and got the main guy [from the New York commission] and said tell them to take that off twice. He had them do it twice. It had to be rewrapped twice and rightly so. At the end of the day there are rules and regulations and people have to stick by them. You can’t just do your own thing because you’re Canelo.”
Moore was not sure if the fight went the way it did due to Fielding not sticking to the gameplan or that Canelo was that good that he negated any plans they had.
“I knew if it came down to that [Rocky] was always going to be brave but the plan wasn’t to attempt to sit in the pocket as early as the first round. I said you need to keep it long. Use your best attributes. Take the sting out of him. Before you sit in the pocket you need to at least take the sting out of him and then start to use your natural size advantage,” Moore said. “I’ll have to watch it back but maybe Canelo made him sit in the pocket, put his presence on him, established himself really quickly inside and hurt him straightaway downstairs. So when you’re in with probably the best pound for pound fighter on the planet, then the gameplan and the tactics are easier said than done. These guys are real good at negating stuff that you’re good at. So if he had done what I asked him to do, it might not have made a difference. We don’t know.
“What he didn’t allow Rocky to do was relax and let his shots go with full intent because he was always half-thinking about the next shot coming back and the reason he was half thinking was because [Alvarez] hurt him straight away downstairs.”
Moore was proud of his fighter, “All I can say is I’m proud of him. He’s got a 13 week old baby girl who he’s not really seen much of because he’s dedicated himself to this. He’s dared to try and do the impossible and unfortunately he didn’t pull it off. I’m proud of him. He kept getting up, I knew he’d keep getting up and the referee called it really well. I’ll be honest with you. Because as I was thinking if he lets him carry on, I’m going to start watching him really carefully and if he starts to get overwhelmed, I’ll step in. You’re not allowed to towel them here, you have to stand on the edge of the ring and I was just about to walk up the stairs so it was a good call and he lives to fight another day.”
“As far as longevity’s concerned it wasn’t a nine, 10, 11 round beat down,” Moore said. “He’ll be alright. He’s disappointed, I’m gutted for him because I know he could have done it better… We knew were up against. We believed we could have won before, if we’d done it right, but watching that now it was a big ask. He wanted to test himself against the very best. And that’s all you can want from a fighter.”
Canelo, Fielding Make Weight For MSG Headliner; Two Bouts Scratched
By Jake Donovan
Two originally scheduled bouts never made it to the scales, but those who made the final cut for Saturday’s show at Madison Square Garden all managed to escape unscathed from Friday’s weigh-in.
Mexico’s Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and England’s Rocky Fielding both easily made weight for their super middleweight showdown Saturday evening at MSG, which will be carried live by sports streaming application DAZN.
Alvarez’s 5’8” frame packed a rock-solid167.4 pounds for just his second career bout above middleweight, where he still reigns as the true World (lineal) champion. His motivation for moving up the scales on Saturday is in attempting to snatch a secondary super middleweight title from the clutches of the 6’1” Fielding, who checked in at 167.6 pounds.
Photo Credit: DAZN Boxing Twitter Account
For Alvarez (50-1-2, 34KOs), the night represents a series of firsts. The 28-year old from Guadalajara, Mexico makes his MSG debut, in fact having only fought once before on the East Coast, coming in Dec. 2008 on a Telemundo-televised show in Miami, Florida.
The night also serves as his first on a DAZN-streamed show, earning $15 million for Saturday’s show before venturing into a record-breaking $350 million contract with the streaming service spanning 10 fights. With a win on Saturday, he will also become the first-ever boxer from Mexico above 140 pounds to win titles in three weight classes—although the legitimacy of belt at stake is rightfully called into question.
Regardless, it’s the latest step in the career of the most bankable active boxer in North America—and possibly the world. Regardless, he joins his only other competitor on that list—England’s unbeaten, unified heavyweight titlist Anthony Joshua—in aligning himself with DAZN, the move coming after having 10 of his past 11 bouts headline on Pay-Per-View.
For Fielding (27-1, 15KOs), the adventure marks his first career fight in the United States and outside of Europe in general. The 31-year old from Liverpool hit the road for the first time in his career in his last fight, scoring an upset 5th round knockout of Tyron Zeuge to win his portion of the super middleweight title this past July in Offerburg, Germany.
The win was Fielding’s 6th straight after suffering the lone loss of his career in Nov. ’15, a 1st round knockout at the hands of Callum Smith, who holds the “super” version of the super middleweight title to Fielding’s “regular” version.
Even on the heels of his current hot streak, the visiting Brit still comes in as an 8-1 betting underdog (Alvarez is a 16-1 favorite).
The originally scheduled co-feature would’ve likely produced Alvarez’ next opponent for his planned May 4th headliner at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Alas, the hunt remains after David Lemieux—the rumored leading candidate—was scratched from the show due to being hospitalized to treat dehydration.
News came less than 30 minutes before the start of the weigh-in, thus cancelling his planned 12-round title eliminator versus Tureano Johnson, who is now owed a fight and payday by Golden Boy Promotions, who promotes all three middleweights.
Elevated to the chief support is resurgent Tevin Farmer, who attempts the second defense of his super middleweight title Francisco Fonseca. Both fighters made weight, although Philadelphia’s Farmer had to strip down to his birthday suit in order to hit the 130-pound mark. Costa Rica’s Fonseca—whose lone other title bid resulted in an 8th round knockout loss to an overweight Gervonta Davis for his only career defeat—came in at 129.4 pounds.
A lightweight title bout dripping with historical implication pits unbeaten defending titlist Katie Taylor versus Finland’s unbeaten 130-pound beltholder Eva Wahlstrom, who moves up in weight.
Taylor checked in at a fighting fit 134.2 pounds as she becomes the first-ever boxer from Ireland to defend a major title at Madison Square Garden. It’s also the first time fighting in the venue for the 32-year old, a two-time Olympian who captured a Gold medal for Ireland in the 2012 London Olympics, whose games were the first to feature women’s boxing.
The Garden party marks a quick turnaround for Taylor, who is coming off of a 10-round shutout of a disinterested Cindy Serrano this past October in Boston, which also streamed live on DAZN.
On the challenger side, Wahlstrom (22-0-1, 4KOs)—who weighed 133.5 pounds—comes in as the only boxer from Finland to capture a major title in the pro ranks. The now-38 year old managed that feat in April ’15, picking up a vacant super featherweight strap which she has defended four times including a points win over Melissa St. Vil in April.
Saturday’s show was also due to feature unbeaten super lightweight prospect Vergil Ortiz (11-0, 11KOs). However, the knockout artist from Texas was denied a license by the New York State Athletic Commission due to having Lasik eye surgery performed this past October, a procedure which serves as medical disqualification in the commission’s view.
The development killed plans for his New York and MSG debut, which was due to come versus Mexico’s Omar Tienda.
DAZN Boxing Preview: Canelo vs. Rocky, Farmer vs. Fonseca
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Golden Boy Promotions top promotional star, Canelo Alvarez, will make his debut in New York City and on the DAZN Streaming Network when he faces off against Rocky Fielding for Fielding’s WBA Super Middleweight title.
This bout will take place at the famed Madison Square Garden and features a rather stacked undercard. The co-main event of the night was originally supposed to be between David Lemieux and Tureano Johnson, but Lemieux had to withdraw due to dehydration issues and the bout between Tevin Farmer and Francisco Fonseca will take it’s place.
Other notable undercard fights include a welterweight bout between Sadam Ali and Mauricio Herrera, an IBF/WBA Women’s Lightweight Title bout between Katie Taylor and Eva Wahlstrom, and two bouts featuring high rated prospects Ryan Garcia and Lamont Roach Jr.
DAZN has gone all in with their partnership with Golden Boy Promotions and Canelo Alvarez, and this is the first of an eleven fight contract that they have with Canelo.
The following is a preview of the co-main event and main event of the night.
Tevin Farmer (27-4) vs. Francisco Fonseca (22-1-1); IBF Junior Lightweight Title
Tevin Farmer is one of those feel good stories in the sport of boxing. He wasn’t a heralded amateur and started his career with a 2-2 record, but he has shown significant improvement since his professional debut and was able to win the IBF Super Featherweight Title.
Farmer only had sixteen amateur fights so he had to learn quickly on the job. He’s not known for his power, he has only stopped six of his opponents and was stopped twice in his career. He lost by TKO in his very first professional fight and was later stopped by Jose Pedraza.
His opponent, Francisco Fonseca, has stopped sixteen of his opponents and was only stopped one time in his career, a knockout loss to Gervonta Davis. Fonseca will have a slight inch and a half height advantage and a two and a half inch reach advantage.
Fonseca has fought mainly in Panama and Costa Rica against suspect opposition. He lost his only fight outside of Central America. His biggest win to date was against a 13-3 Daniel Miranda. He’s been fairly active and fought once in 2018 and four times in 2017.
Farmer fought twice in 2018 and twice in 2017. He’s shown significant improvement since his debut, especially defensively, and has beaten the likes of James Tennyson, Billy Dib, Arturo Santos Reyes, Ivan Redkach, and Angel Luna.
This is a bout that Farmer should win by decision. Farmer is angling for a future fight with Gervonta Davis and he’ll need an impressive performance to get the boxing community talking about a potential fight with Davis.
Rocky Fielding (27-1) vs. Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2); WBA Super Middleweight Title
Canelo Alvarez is arguably boxing’s biggest, active star. He’ll be chasing history on Saturday night as he looks to win a title in his third weight class, and become the ninth Mexican boxer to do so.
Canelo is in the midst of his prime at 28 years old and is three years younger than his opponent. However, Canelo is the smaller man and will be giving up height, reach, and size to Fielding.
Canelo turned pro at the age of fifteen, so Fielding has more amateur experience than Canelo as he experienced some success as an amateur on the English circuit.
Canelo also has significantly more power in his punches than Fielding. He has stopped 34 of his opponents while Fielding has only stopped fifteen. Fielding also has a TKO loss on his record when he was stopped by Callum Smith. Canelo’s lone loss was to Floyd Mayweather Jr. five years ago and he has never been stopped.
Both fighters have been fairly active. Canelo fought twice in 2017 and once in 2018 while Fielding fought twice in 2018 and in 2017.
Canelo has a long list of accomplished opponents that he has beaten. He has defeated the likes of Gennady Golovkin, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., Liam Smith, Amir Khan, Miguel Cotto, James Kirkland, Erislandy Lara, Alfredo Angulo, Austin Trout, Shane Mosley, and Carlos Baldomir.
Fielding’s biggest wins were against Tyron Zeuge for the WBA Super Middleweight title, David Brophy, John Ryder, and Brian Vera. This will only be his second fought outside of the United Kingdom and his first fight in the United States.
It’s likely Fielding’s size advantage will give Canelo some problems early on, but Canelo’s skill is levels above Fielding and he should win quite comfortably in his New York City debut.
Keys to Victory for Canelo and Fielding
By: Daniel Smith
In what is anticipated to be a rapid-paced, dynamite clash at Madison Square Garden, streaming live on DAZN, this Saturday night, Canelo Alvarez heeds the rapacious title pangs while licking his lips at the succulent prospect of brutally dismantling Rocky Fielding for the WBA super middleweight crown to become a three weight-class world champion.
Alvarez will certainly be fighting within the parameters of Fielding’s 160-169lbs weight domain. However, while the physical fundamentals of this bout are noticeably tilted in the scouser’s favour, it’ll be the exquisite and elite boxing calibre of Saul “Cinnamon” Alvarez that prevails.
Michael “Rocky” Fielding is a tough kid whose hard, creasing body shots generate enough thud to blast the wind out of any fighters’ sails within the super middleweight division. The 6ft 1″ Liverpudlian is a massive underdog entering into this boxing chapter of his career. However, with a thrilling enticement, confidence, firmly planted level of self-belief and a relished enthrallment that revs him up for Saturday’s bout, Fielding’s game-plan will effectively unfold or be stifled from one or two manners.
First, he may utilize his exceptionally long-spearing reach, to stab and jab at Canelo, frustrating the Mexican while maintaining the distance throughout the fight, grabbing the points win. Alternatively, he may take the bull by the horns and immerse into a vicious scrap – it’s no secret Rocky likes a swift start and can prefer to switch a marathon into a 100-meter sprint. So, we may just be treated to an all-out war and toe-to-toe trade, where granite chins and big balls emerge victoriously.
Saul “Canelo” Alvarez
In an adrenaline-jacked fusion of blistering hand speed, greasy-rhythmical manoeuvring and an attacking ferocity that’s set to a hair trigger, it’s highly likely we’ll see a ten-pounds heavier and ripped-rampart version of the WBA and WBC middleweight champion.
With a shortly clipped head of hair, broad frame, thick pitbull neck and a back that presents like a hillock of muscle, Alvarez will be chomping at the bit to unleash relentless brutal pugilistic-menace that machine-guns a range of powerful combinations, ultimately avalanching his opponent to the canvas in a bloodied, bruised-up and crumpled heap.
Despite the extra muscle-weight, Alvarez will still maintain speed and agility, while out-boxing, out-powering and out-punching Fielding throughout the fight. His slippery head and body movement, neat graceful footwork and ability counter with such devastation will exhibit his world-class boxing prowess, ferocious momentum and knock-out execution.
Thereafter, we’ll probably see the Cinnamon haired, powerhouse Mexican drop back down to middleweight and dish-out a forcible and compelling win over GGG in a third encounter, sometime in 2019.
But like always, this is boxing and anything can arise. We all love the tale of an underdog and how the odds, opinions and views for victory were defied and written off. Or how controversy with judges and referees decisions (although sometimes seemingly harsh, inadequate or wrong) can upset the fold and change the course of fighters path. Either way, this is part and parcel of the sport and it’s what ignites and intrigues our interest, keeps us reading, watching discussing, debating and entertained by boxing.
Rocky vs. Canelo – Live from Maidson Square Garden, Saturday, December 15. A cracking night of boxing should be on the cards.
David Lemieux-Tureano Johnson: “Don’t Blink”
By: Sean Crose
After destroying the flamboyant and outspoken Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan this past September, the 40-4 David Lemieux will continue his quest to regain a middleweight title claim when he faces the 20-2 Tureano Johnson at Madison Square Garden this Saturday. The 12 round bout will be on the undercard of the Canelo Alvarez-Rocky Fielding match, which will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service. Lemieux, the former IBF world middleweight titleholder, will be taking part in his third and final bout of 2018, after losing a one sided decision to Billy Joe Saunders in December of 2017 for the WBO world middleweight belt.
At the moment, Lemiuex has his sights set on boxing’s biggest star, Canelo Alvarez. Both fighters are under the banner of Golden Boy Promotions, and both are fighting on DAZN. A come forward, exciting fighter, Lemieux can end a bout in shockingly violent fashion…but has come up short in his two biggest matches. Aside from the Saunders loss, Gennady Golovkin beat the Canadian up in one sided fashion back in 2015. Lemieux however, claims to have gown as a result of the challenges he’s faced. “Over the years,” he said during a Thursday press conference, “I’ve learned a lot and matured a lot.”
Lemieux’s promoter, Golden Boy honcho Oscar De La Hoya, had impressive things to say about the former champion. “When talking about David Lemieux,” the hall of fame boxer told the media, “two words come to mind: Don’t Blink.”
Although Lemieux may be looking forward to facing Canelo in the future, Johnson is no one’s easy out. Indeed, Johnson has his own career goals set out for him, with Canelo undoubtedly being high on his list. Although he was stopped in 2017 by Sergiy Derevyanchenko, Johnson exuded a highly positive attitude at Thursday’s press conference. “What’s the matter with you guys,” he joked to those gathered, “you haven’t had your breakfast or something?” It was clear the man was ready to face Lemieux this weekend. “I am definitely going to bring it,” he said, adding that “it’s going to be an exciting one.”
While the Lemieux-Johnson battle isn’t the main attraction this weekend, it’s certainly being portrayed as a potentially thrilling affair. It also may offer a peek into the future, as opponents will be needed for Canelo now that he’s signed a highly lucrative contract with DAZN. The winner may well face the man in the near future…provided, of course, that Canelo bests Fielding in Saturday’s main event.
Canelo: One Step Away From History
By: Hans Themistode
To every one else it’s just a number but too Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) it means everything.
It was clear that from the beginning that Canelo would become a special fighter. After all he turned professional at only the age of 15. He went on to knockout 11 of his first 13 opponents. That may sound impressive but in actuality it’s not. That’s what a young prospect is supposed to do. Dominate the level of opposition and continue to get better. Alvarez did exactly what he was supposed to do.
As the years went by and the opposition got tougher Alvarez only continued to dominate. He began to win belts on a much smaller level. None of those achievements meant anything to Canelo. No fighter truly cares about the those smaller titles. With all due respect to belts such as the NABF, WBC silver and intercontinental titles but they don’t hold much worth. Every fighter truly wants to become a legit world champion at some point in their career.
For Alvarez that time came at Super Middleweight in 2011 when he defeated Matthew Hatton by unanimous decision for the vacant WBC crown. Canelo went on to defend that title six times against incredibly stiff competition including Josesito Lopez, future hall of famer albeit past his prime at the time Shane Mosley and Austin Trout. In defeating Trout he would add his WBA title to his collection and become a unified champion.
We all remember his bout against Floyd Mayweather which ended in his first defeat. From there he went on to defeat a murderers row of challengers including Alfredo Angulo, Erislandy Lara and James Kirkland.
Victory in those matches were needed in order to set up a fight with the legendary Miguel Cotto for the WBC Middleweight title. Alvarez went on to defeat Cotto and become a two division champion. Since then Canelo has gone on to defeat arguably the toughest competition. In his most recent two bouts he took on the undefeated heavy hitting
Gennady Golovkin (GGG). The aforementioned GGG presented Canelo with his biggest and highest profile win of his career thus far.
The road to a Middleweight title now went through Canelo Alvarez. With so many big names in the division the options for his next fight were endless. A third fight with GGG seemed possible. A matchup with the young undefeated Jermall Charlo sounds even more enticing. Even a bout with current promotional banner fighter David Lemieux sounds like a great fight. We can’t forget about the other two Middleweight champions in Danny Jacobs and Demetrius Andrade. Becoming undisputed champion seems within reach for Canelo now.
Instead of choosing any of these fighters Canelo elected to go up to the Super Middleweight division and challenge WBA regular titleist Rocky Fielding (27-1, 15 KOs).
It was a perplexing moving to say the least when it was first announced. However when you sit down and think about it, the bout against Rocky makes all the sense in the world. Canelo isn’t just a great fighter but he’s also someone that studies the history of boxing and appreciates it. It’s why he is so honored to be fighting in Madison Square Garden this weekend. He has expressed pride in gracing the same ring as other great fighters have before him such as Muhammad Ali. More than anything it gives Canelo a chance to make history himself.
There have been eight Mexican fighters in the entire history of boxing that have gone on to win world titles in at least three different weight divisions. The number nine which was previously mentioned in the beginning of this article represents what a victory over Rocky Fielding this weekend means as he would become the ninth member on that illustrious list.
It won’t be an easy nights work for Canelo. Rocky will enjoy a significant height, weight and reach advantage. Alvarez will have a tough night ahead of him no matter what the critics may think of his opponent.
However with history only one step away Canelo is sure to step up to the challenge as he has done time and time again.
A victory this weekend will solidly his place in boxing history.
The Rocky Road to Canelo
By: Ste Rowen
Just over three years ago Rocky Fielding was still trying to pick himself up from a devastating first round knockout loss to Callum Smith. Knocked down three times before trying but being unable to continue on the fourth time down in an all-Liverpool matchup for the British super-middleweight title.
Around about the same time, Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez had decisioned future hall of famer, Miguel Cotto in a competitive but domineering performance.
Who could have predicted back then, or even mere months ago, that the two would meet in a headline show at Madison Square Garden?
‘‘It was who landed who really wasn’t it? And he got the shot’’ Rocky said of the Smith bout post-fight.
On that night in November 2015 Rocky was dropped within 28 seconds, went into survival mode and tried to fight fire with fire, unsuccessfully. However, it’s clearly a knock he learnt from as in his close comeback fight with Christopher Rebrasse six months later, he was heavily put down in round 2 but rose on the bell and stayed measured in his approach to eventually regain the ground lost early on.
Since earning a split decision victory over the Frenchman in 2016, Fielding has been busy reshaping his career, ensuring he’s remembered for his victories rather than, so far, his one defeat.
‘Rocky from Stocky’ finally got his hands on the British belt he missed out on against Smith when he fought out a brilliantly competitive fight with John Ryder in early 2017, winning via a slightly controversial split decision but arguably more significant was his stoppage victory over Tyron Zeuge earlier this year, to claim the secondary WBA world title in Germany.
In Offenburg last July, Fielding waited out Tyron’s early plan of attack before launching his own offense and punish the WBA ‘Regular’ champion through rounds 4 and 5 until the eventual left hook body-shot-finish that ended the fight.
Though Zeuge is undoubtedly levels below the quality of fighter Canelo is, Fielding’s plan this weekend may be similar to the one he employed against the German.
So, can Fielding do it? Almost all the evidence to date suggests not, or, everyone’s favourite phrase, ‘He has a puncher’s chance’ but he may not even have that. The unified middleweight champion has continuously proved that as well as his much-lauded defensive movement and power; that red-headed Mexican has one helluva chin too, having tasted the best that Gennady Golovkin has to offer and managed to stay upright.
At 27-1 (15KOs) and having racked up a number of domestic amateur titles, Rocky has been in with an extensive variety of styles. His height in comparison is the most obvious difference and having always been a rangy fighter, the WBA ‘Regular’ champion will need to force his fight on the Mexican early on if he wants any chance of getting the stoppage. Because let’s face it, even if he somehow dominates Alvarez over the 12-round distance, he’s not getting the judge’s decision.
He’s told Sky Sports News that he’s taking inspiration from fellow Merseyside-fighter, Tony Bellew who accumulated stoppage victories over Ilunga Makabu and David Haye twice, and his trainer, Jamie Moore has a firm plan A in mind to beat the pound-for-pound boxer,
‘‘He (Canelo) will have to overcome the difference in length which creates danger that he will walk onto shots…Golovkin had success in closing the distance and we can map out our game plan based on that.
Nailing him upstairs is a hard task but not impossible.’’
Win, lose or draw on Saturday, Rocky serves as inspiration to boxers who have faulted domestically but learned to overcome and maneuverer his way into the most profitable opposition outside of the heavyweights.
The unpredictable matchup awaits, but will we get an unpredictable result?
Daniel Jacobs: “It’s No Secret That My Focus Is On Canelo”
By: Sean Crose
IBF Middleweight champion Daniel Jacobs will be watching Canelo Alvarez fight live and in person on Saturday as the Mexican star aims for super middleweight glory against WBA titlist Rocky Fielding. “Daniel Jacobs is gunning for a Middleweight World title unification battle with Canelo Alvarez in 2019,” promotional outlet Matchroom Boxing claims, “and the IBF World ruler says their showdown is one of the biggest fights in boxing.” Jacobs has been aligned with Matchroom kingpin Eddie Hearn for some time now, and is looking for major opposition. “Jacobs,” Matchroom claims, “wants Canelo to return to Middleweight and put his titles on the line in a huge Cinco de Mayo showdown.”
Photo Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing USA
Canelo-Jacobs would certainly be an interesting, high stakes affair. Both men are extremely skilled, both men hit hard, and both men have had tight battles with powerhouse Gennady Golovkin, battles which have all ended in controversial decisions. While many argue that Canelo didn’t deserve his decision win over Golovkin last autumn, many also feel that Golovkin didn’t deserve his decision win over Jacobs in 2017. Although Canelo is certainly the top star at middleweight, there is no consensus as to who the best middleweight in the word is right now. Jacobs’ name is certainly in the running.
“I’ll be there front and center on Saturday night,” says Jacobs. “It’s no secret that my focus is on Canelo. There is no other fight in boxing I want right now more than him.” The Brooklyn native rightly sees himself as a top level opponent for Canelo, who is widely regarded as boxing’s biggest star. “This is not only the absolute biggest fight to be made in the division,” Jacobs says, “but one of the biggest in all of boxing. As long as he takes care of business on Saturday night I’m ready to go. Let’s give the fans and the sport of boxing what they want and let’s get this done for May 4.”
Naturally, Hearn would love to see Jacobs and Canelo throw down in the spring. Indeed, it’s a fight that might be easy to make since Canelo is now associated with DAZN streaming service, which also broadcasts Hearn’s stable of fighters. “I’m rooting for a Rocky Fielding win this Saturday,” Hearn says, “and when Canelo returns to Middleweight, THE fight for May is the Canelo vs. Jacobs unification.”
Hearn is eager to have his man’s presence be felt at Madison Square Garden this weekend, which is where the Canelo-Fielding match will go down.
According to Hearn, Canelo-Jacobs is “a fight he (Jacobs) wants and one he believes he wins. He will be there on Saturday with among the star-studded crowd watching very closely.”
Alvarez-Golovkin And The Drug Testing Story That Never Should Have Been
By Jake Donovan
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin have developed one of the most contentious rivalries in the sport today—so much, that even random social media discussion has somehow become headline news.
The latest twist involving the best two middleweights in the world today once again revisits the drug testing subplot, with the validity of random testing provided somehow—and falsely—called into question.
Both boxers were subject to random drug testing as administered by Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA)—a Las Vegas-based company founded by Dr. Margaret Goodman, a longtime advocate for the safety and health of boxers—surrounding their rematch this past September in Las Vegas.
The same agency was involved in their first fight one year prior, with testing at the time serving as merely a footnote. The far greater focus was on their HBO Pay-Per-View headliner ending in a highly questionable split decision draw which many felt Golovkin deserved to win.
The two camps came to terms for an agreed-upon rematch, which was due to take place this past May. However, the drug testing angle became the major focal point after Alvarez was discovered to have failed two VADA-conducted tests, both showing trace amounts of the banned substance Clenbuterol.
Even while armed with the alibi of the substance being unknowingly digested through contaminated meat—an ongoing epidemic in Alvarez’ native Mexico—the ultimate decision rendered down by the Nevada State Athletic Commission was for the superstar athlete to serve a six-month suspension, while also issuing the reminder that all athletes are responsible for what goes into their bodies regardless of means of consumption.
Alvarez took the punishment, also agreeing to enroll in year-round VADA testing which began in May. The decision served as the first step toward rescheduling his rematch with Golovkin, with the two sides going beyond their internally-imposed deadline in ultimately coming to terms to once again meet in September.
With Alvarez already enrolled, VADA agreed to create a specific testing program for the rematch, with the September 15 fight night date serving as the closing period. Alvarez won a majority decision in a fight where most ringside observers felt a draw or a close Golovkin victory was the more appropriate call, but the outcome not as contentious as was the case one year prior.
Except to the Golovkin camp.
The loss ended his reign of 20 successful defenses (which includes five defenses of an “interim” title, which some historians dismiss), tying him with Bernard Hopkins, a stakeholder in Golden Boy Promotions, Alvarez’s promoter. The post-fight drug test which followed was also supposed to end the testing period as it pertained to this bout, although Alvarez was due to remain in the program as per his contracted agreement to year-round testing which runs through May 2019.
This somehow became a topic of discussion two months after the fact.
A random discussion on social media called to question whether or not Alvarez remained enrolled in VADA’s program without interruption. The inquiry came about after the agency welcomed to the program reigning secondary super middleweight titlist Rocky Fielding, who will face Alvarez on December 15 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
The conversation took a bizarre turn when Tom Loeffler—managing director of 360 Promotions and the driving force behind Golovkin’s career—offered a response suggesting that post-fight testing was yet another angle in the rivalry in which their side was dealt the short straw.
“VADA scheduled a random test for GGG a week after the fight,” Loeffler stated on social media. “I made sure that Canelo was also going to be tested. Next day the random test was cancelled. Strange that it was scheduled then cancelled, maybe Canelo was already in [Mexico] eating steaks celebrating his ‘decision’.”
Not only was it the wrong setting for such a pointed remark but was entirely incorrect in its implication.
The eventually canceled test was initially scheduled by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, which has often contracted VADA for testing needs. However, the decision to test both fighters that far after the fight was not made by VADA, as Golovkin’s specific obligation to the program ended on fight night.
“Tom Loeffler’s tweets regarding Golovkin/Alvarez testing are not correct,” Goodman told BoxingInsider.com via email in response to the conversation. “VADA tested both fighters many times leading up to their rematch and post-fight. Mr. Alvarez remains in VADA’s year-round testing program and subject to testing.
“Golovkin’s program ended September 15, 2018. The commission initially requested that we arrange to test both fighters again. Since many fighters travel after an event, and as Golovkin was no longer in VADA we confirmed his whereabouts. However, soon after the confirmation, the commission changed their decision.”
The decision as well as Goodman’s take were both subsequently confirmed by Golovkin’s side while offering its best efforts to walk back such comments.
“It was not VADA that cancelled the test, apparently it was the Commission,” Loeffler confirmed to BoxingInsider.com via text. “I didn’t mean to disparage VADA in any way; I’m a firm believer in what they do and that they are the best testing we have to try to prevent any banned substance use. Their testing is what showed the two positive tests for Canelo for Clenbuterol and that wouldn’t have shown up had we not started early testing with VADA.
“They cancelled the test for GGG, not sure what they did with Canelo, I just figured both were cancelled, but that information would have to come from VADA or the commission. We have insisted on VADA testing for all of the GGG fights as well as (former World heavyweight champion Wladimir) Klitschko fights in Europe and Moscow, so we believe in their testing program being effective and complimenting the WBC clean boxing program.”
Golovkin remains on the hunt for a new platform to carry his next fight and beyond. The knockout artist from Kazakhstan was among the many boxers left without a network home after HBO—the premium cable giant whom has aired all but two of his bouts since his stateside debut in 2012—announced in September that it would no longer remain in the boxing business following their final forthcoming December 8 telecast (fittingly, presented by Loeffler’s 360 Promotions). Talks are ongoing with many top players, including the top brass at ESPN, Showtime and sports streaming service DAZN, the latter with whom Alvarez signed a record-breaking contract and on which he will debut in December.
There stands a chance that their paths will once again cross. Hopefully by then, the storylines will remain limited to their in-ring rivalry and not news items that never should have been news to begin with.