Canelo vs. GGG 2 Press Conference Transcript
MAURICIO PEDROZA: To everyone, watching on Facebook Live today, we want to hear from you. Leave your questions for the fighters, the promoters in the comments section below for a chance to have your questions answered live on the air today.
So stay tuned for that. All right. Let’s get this started. Let’s go straight to our fighters, to our promotors and we go live to Guadalajara, Mexico.
Both fighters have already started their training camps and we will introduce everyone around this fantastic fight. Joining Canelo from his gym in Guadalajara is his manager and co-trainer Jose “Chepo” Reynoso, his trainer Eddy Reynoso, and the and chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, Oscar De La Hoya who will open our press conference with a few remarks.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Thank you very much. Thank you for having us. I want to express my gratitude to everybody around the world watching us live for the first time ever holding a press conference on Facebook. We greatly appreciate the support, and today, as of 10:00 in the morning, tickets went on sale. They are going extremely well, extremely fast, and we are grateful to all the fans who can be watching live on September 15 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
I want to thank Team Canelo. I want to thank Team GGG for making this fight once again for the fans. The fans got to witness an incredible, incredible fight the first time around, and we strongly believe that the second fight will be a continuation, round No. 13, of their first fight televised live on HBO Pay-Per-View.
The telecast does begin at 8:00 Eastern. This will give an opportunity for the fans across the globe to watch this fight at an earlier time. So we want to thank HBO and their teams.
Mauricio Pedroza: Thank you, Oscar.
Joining GGG live from the summit gym in bear, California is his trainer, Abel Sanchez and promotor for GGG, Tom Loeffler, who will also begin with a few remarks. Tom?
TOM LOEFFLER: Today, this rematch really feels like it’s a much bigger event than the first time. There was a lot of controversy around the scoring for the first fight, and both guys don’t want to leave it in the judges’ hands this time.
We’re up here where Abel Sanchez has his training camp in Big Bear, California. GGG is training to make a much more decisive victory over Canelo the second time around. You see we have all the titles here.
GGG is the champion, and if Canelo wants to become a champion, he actually has to fight and try to take the titles away.
So we are looking forward to seeing everyone September 15 at T-Mobile and on HBO Pay-Per-View.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Tom, thank you very much.
So first question is for you, Canelo. What happened, and what would you like to say to your fans that were disappointed in you?
CANELO ALVAREZ: The reason for the cancellation, we all talked about that. The main thing is the fight got here, the fight got done. I did it for the fans. This is the fight you wanted to see and come September 15, I can assure you it will be a much better fight than what you would have seen in May.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: How disappointed were you the fight didn’t happen in May?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: Of course we were all disappointed. I was disappointed and the fans were disappointed that this first May 15 bout didn’t happen, but right now everybody is happy that we all agreed to have this next fight on September 15.
So both us and our fans should be happy.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Gennady, do you really believe the reason Canelo tested positive for clenbuterol was tainted meat?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: First of all, I respect the fighters of the level of Canelo, and the fact that they screwed up, it was not my decision to disqualify him, and I think it was a team failure, but it doesn’t matter right now. It doesn’t matter right now. It’s important that we’re going to have a fight.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Abel Sanchez, do you believe the reason Canelo tested positive for clenbuterol was tainted meat? You were very vocal when this news first came around that Canelo might be suspended.
ABEL SANCHEZ: We had been waiting for the commission to do their investigation, and come on, whatever the findings were, unfortunately they made a mistake. We have a fight on our hands September 15. They found him innocent of anything, any wrongdoing, so we have to go with that.
My personal feelings have nothing to do or should have nothing to do with the actual findings of the commission.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: But why are you saying you think they made a mistake? What mistake did they make?
ABEL SANCHEZ: Well, they felt that he made a mistake. They felt that he ingested some bad beef. Hopefully this time that they are in Mexico, he doesn’t do that again. We’d like to have a fight on the 15th and the fans deserve that.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Even though your rematch against Canelo Alvarez says was cancelled, you still fought in May in Los Angeles at the StubHub Center against Vanes “Nightmare” Martirosyan. What were you trying to prove in the fight?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: Well, because I like to be active, I like this box, I like this sport, and I like the fans. You know, the fans wanted me to fight, and why shouldn’t I? Why shouldn’t I fight, particularly on such an important day, May the 5th.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Did you watch GGG’s fight in May?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Yes. Yes, I did see the fight in May. Of course I would. He’s the opponent that I have at hand and that’s my job to watch him.
As far as what I thought about the fight, look, you can’t call that a fight. You have no opponent. That’s not my level of opponent. I didn’t pay attention as far as that being a fight.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Oscar, could you take us through the negotiations that have taken place over the last few months?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: The negotiations are the negotiations. The bottom line is that we have a fight. Obviously we know who the A side is, and that’s Canelo Alvarez.
We obviously know that all of Mexico is behind Canelo Alvarez. Everywhere I go, everywhere we walk, the Mexican National is behind Canelo Alvarez, and I strongly believe that, look, Canelo going into the ring last, wanting to win those belts, for honor and pride.
You know, he’s going to show it up in the ring, and we strongly feel that you know, it’s a big advantage and once that first bell rings, you know, we have a fight.
So we strongly feel that, look, whatever the negotiations were, we’re extremely happy with and the fans are going to be even happier when they see a fight on September 15.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Tell us why is it so important for this rematch to take place on September 15? So important, that you had to put up your own money to make happen.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, that was the big hail maker — I mean, you know, we can all here talk about percentages and this and that but there was a few things that I had to throw in myself.
But the bottom line is, is that look, Canelo has the bigger piece of the pie, and because he’s the champion, he’s the draw. He’s the one that brings in the people. On September 15, you will have millions and millions of fans supporting Canelo and supporting GGG, as well.
But this fight had to be made because we didn’t want to experience another Hagler/Hearns or Hagler/Sugar Ray Leonard because we didn’t see the second fight that didn’t take place. We didn’t want to see – like Trinidad and myself, we didn’t see the second fight.
So this fight had to take place. The first time was a draw and finally we have it. September 15, will be such an important day for boxing. I strongly feel that the way this fight is going to turn out, the fans are going to be extremely happy, extremely proud and boxing will once again rise to the pinnacle of where it should be.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Why is it so important for GGG, for this fight to take place and to make the compromises GGG has had to take in order to ensure the rematch? For example, letting go of your position that the percentage for the rematch should be an even and even split.
TOM LOEFFLER: On our side we know who the champion is. It doesn’t matter who is announced first. Doesn’t matter whose name appears first on the poster.
GGG is the champion. He’s going to walk in with his belts and the important thing is he’s going to walk out with his belts. There were a lot of back and forth with the negotiations but again, we have to give both fighters credit. We have to give GGG credit. We have to give Canelo credit. We have to give Oscar and Golden Boy Promotions credit.
The bottom line is, we are not just talking about the rematch. We are actually seeing the rematch happen September 15. A lot of fighters can’t even fight the first time, and here are two of the biggest stars in boxing fighting the rematch.
Neither side wants to let it go to the judges. Canelo is predicting a KO. GGG doesn’t want to go through the same thing he went through last year in September — where his fate is in the hands of three people. He wants to make sure he controls his destiny and wants to make sure there’s going to be no question who walks out of the ring as the champion on September 15.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: We heard Oscar describing why Canelo Alvarez is the main man in this fight, so why do you think you deserve a 50/50 split?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: I always believe that and I know Oscar says, and I not always agree with what Oscar says. For example, I don’t believe all Mexico will be rooting for Canelo. I understand that all Oscar think that Canelo is the main locomotive behind this fight, but I think we’re both worthy of this fight.
As far as the 45 to 55, yes, we made a concession. I think that we make a big concession, but I think it’s right now, it’s the most important thing that we are going to have a fight and our fans will love it.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Canelo, Gennady just said he doesn’t believe that whole of Mexico will be rooting for you. Do you agree, and why do you think GGG believes he has some part of the Mexican fans behind him?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Look, I’ve always had detractors, regardless I’m fighting him or who I’m fighting. There’s always that side of the fans that are the detractors, but I have much more, many more, that love and support me.
And now, that little respect that I had or that we had, it’s been lost, and come September 15, it’s just him and I in the ring, whether I have the support or not. It’s just going to be him and I, and he’ll see.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Now I want to go back to Oscar De La Hoya. As a fighter, does being in a fight like this motivate you more in training camp, especially when you just heard Canelo saying he doesn’t respect GGG anymore?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, that’s exactly what a fighter needs, and that’s exactly why this fight is going to be such a great fight.
Like Canelo said, the little respect they had for each other is out the window, and when you’re a fighter and you have no respect for your opponent, magic happens. Magic takes place inside the ring. You train harder in the gym. You run extra miles. You assure yourself that you’re in tiptop shape but more importantly it’s mental, the mental aspect of it is at its highest level. That’s why I think that these bullfighters are going to be in tiptop shape come September 15 and we will see an amazing fight.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: As a fight fan and promotor, how excited are you for the fight and how excited shot fans be for the fight?
TOM LOEFFLER: Not only as a promotor but as a boxing fight, this is the fight everyone is looking forward to. This is the fight the fans are looking forward to, that the media has been asking about.
And GGG, I get a lot of comments, a lot of messages on social media from fans in Mexico saying, please knock out Canelo, don’t let it in the judges’ hands this time and GGG is going to come out that way.
I know Oscar is down there in Mexico with Canelo. Make sure, Canelo, less Mexican meat, more Mexican style this time, September 15. Make sure everything goes the right way.
There’s two warriors getting in the ring. The gloves are off this time around. Both guys, you know, feel disrespected by what happened last May 5, so I think the fans are going to win coming up September 15 when these guys get in the ring with each other.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Oscar De La Hoya on May 15 Tweeted the following, “In the meantime, @GGGBoxing making 3million and #Canelo making 40million without you. #signthecontract. #scared. #CaneloGGG2. #stopcrying.”
We just talked about respect. Gennady, how do you respond to this, to what Oscar De La Hoya had to say about you on May 11?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: Oscar De La Hoya can say a lot of things, and it’s not always correct.
As far as the money concerned, I’m a fighter, and I go and work, do my work. I fight. As far as Oscar De La Hoya, I suggest that he should take care of his own fighter and if he wants him to make more money, let’s have a fight. Put him on the ring.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: I want to go back to Abel. This quote from Canelo Alvarez, this past week on RingTV.com, “The truth is that this fight means a lot to me because of all that has happened and all that has been said.”
Alvarez said, Friday, one day officially before tickets go on sale, “I will prove with my fists that I am the best and Golovkin will eat all his words and speculations. I will demonstrate who the best when I defeat Golovkin soundly on September 11 during Independence Day weekend, and I will make it clear that Mexican boxing is the best.”
Abel, do you think Canelo has what it takes to knockout GGG?
ABEL SANCHEZ: All those same things were said prior to the first fight and it ended up being a track meet.
I think that on the 15th when Oscar and Canelo were having breakfast, Oscar needs to remind him, he needs to bring his courage to the venue that night because he’s going to need it.
If he intends to knock out Golovkin, he’s going to have to fight him. And if he fights him, he’s going to get knocked out. I said that before; he would have gotten knocked out the first time, but he decided to make it a track meet that night.
But if he comes to fight and if he comes to knock out Golovkin as he said he’s going to; if he doesn’t defraud the fans again, then he’s going to get knocked out. I’ve said it and I’ll say it again.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Canelo, you just heard Abel saying you didn’t want to fight the first time. I want to go back to you now and let you answer that statement because it seems like from GGG’s camp, you were never willing to engage during the fight. Will this time be any different?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I did my fight. I did what I set out to do. I did what I trained to do but I did a great fight.
But on September 15, I’m going to do the necessary adjustments and the necessary things to win. This man just likes to talk. He likes to talk a lot and bring up every excuse possible, but you’ll see, on September 15, what Canelo Alvarez is all about and what he’s capable of doing.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Gennady, you just heard Canelo saying that was his fight, that was his strategy, but he says it’s going to be different.
How about from your side? How different is your strategy going to be to face with Canelo once again?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: As the champion, I know my strategy and of course in this upcoming fight, a lot will depend on Canelo and the more Canelo had show, the more interesting will be the fight.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Eddy, why is your fighter the better fighter?
EDDY REYNOSO: He’s a fighter with more arguments. He has more talent and is more versatile. He knows how to walk in the ring and make you miss, counterpunch, attack. I mean, he has the total package.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Chepo, what did you learn from that first fight that can expose GGG’s weaknesses?
CHEPO REYNOSO: He’s an intelligent fighter and regardless of what people thought, I thought he clearly won the fight, clearly but come September 15, I can assure you two things. Not only is he going to take away GGG’s undefeated record, he’s also going to shut up Mr. Abel Sanchez.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Abel, you just heard Canelo saying, we’ll see a different Canelo, even Chepo Reynoso said we’ll see a different Canelo. What did you learn from Canelo Alvarez on the first fight, and do you think we’ll see a different Canelo Ãlvarez September 15?
ABEL SANCHEZ: Well, in the first 40-some fights we saw Canelo fight, he fought a totally different fight and he promised the fans he was going to give them the same type of action against Golovkin. After the first couple rounds, he found out he couldn’t.
I hope September 15 coming up is different because I think the fans deserve what we have been promising them. Golovkin fights in his style. He’s the champion. He’s going to go at Canelo, and if Canelo thinks he can knock him out, then I think we’ll see a classic fight.
It doesn’t matter how smart Canelo is, when he gets hit and he get hurt, he’s going to be knocked out. Smarts have nothing to do with it. He’s going to get hit and get hurt.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Several times Sanchez called Alvarez a cheater after all the controversy surrounding his suspension. How did that make you feel, and what do you think of Abel Sanchez as a trainer?
CHEPO REYNOSO: I think Abel Sanchez likes to talk. He talks too much. At the end of the day it’s going to be Canelo Alvarez and GGG fighting with their fists and not with their mouths. He likes to be the star of the movie, and it’s not him.
This is about Canelo and GGG. And what we need to do as corner men, as trainers, is do our job quietly because it’s not about us.
Abel, learn to be quiet, please.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Oscar, what have you seen so far from Canelo’s team and the way they are preparing for September 15?
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Well, it’s clear that for team canal low, it’s a totally different mind-set. It’s a totally different fight. Just being an ex-fighter myself, I know what type of preparations you must do in order to fulfill your goal, to fulfill your goal come September 15 against GGG, and I can assure you, I mean, it’s clear that Canelo is in a stronger state of mind. There’s obviously bad blood, and therefore, that’s why it’s going to be an amazing fight.
Look, Canelo, yes, he can box. He can move. He’s the more skillful fighter. He can do all that stuff, but he can also fight. And GGG hasn’t seen that, but I’ll assure you one thing: Come September 15, it’s all business. It’s all going in there and proving not to everyone who is watching but proving to GGG that he’s the better fighter.
So will Canelo be in different shape? Will he be in better shape in will he be stronger, faster? He’s going to be all that, and then some.
So on our side, we strongly feel they haven’t seen Canelo the way they are going to see him September 15. We have seen GGG. We know what he does. All he does is come forward and fights and that’s it. Canelo has many other things he does, so come September 15, you’ll be able to witness them.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Oscar, I want to give you a chance to respond to one of Tom’s comments, also Gennady’s comments, when they say that Mexico is actually split. It’s divided. Not everyone is rooting for Canelo, and some Mexicans are rooting for Gennady Golovkin.
OSCAR DE LA HOYA: Everybody has their fans. Everybody has their fans. There’s a reason why when Canelo fights on HBO Pay-Per-View, which he’s the only Pay-Per-View star in boxing, there’s a reason why they support him. There’s a reason why he generates the numbers he does. There’s a reason why the gates are so high. There’s a reason why the numbers are so high.
Look, every fighter has their naysayers, and every fighter has their non-supporters, but the truth of the matter is that Canelo has millions and millions of fans all over the world just like GGG.
But we have to recognize one thing; that Canelo is the Mexican champion, the star of Mexico, the star of boxing.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: GGG, you just heard Canelo Alvarez saying how he has lost some respect for you. Let me ask you something. Have you also lost respect for Canelo Alvarez, the boxer, or even the person?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: Respect is respect. We have different mentality. We have different understanding of what respect is. I think Canelo team, by doing what they did, and they lost some respect from their fans. But it’s not important.
I do have respect to all the fighters, all the athletes, all the champions who fight at this level, and I think at the very end, we will find a way to shake each other’s hand, regardless what the outcome, regardless what we think before the fight. As two men, we should be able to stand against each other and shake each other’s hand at the end.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: I remember before the first fight, you both were behaving in a very respectful manner. Why does this time feel like more personal to you, actually to both of you, but for you, is this personal this time?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Yes, absolutely, it’s changed, totally. They disrespected me for everything they have been saying, everything they have been doing, all their actions. Now it’s different. It’s personal.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: A lot has been said from both camps about you and GGG, but one of your biggest critics so far is Abel Sanchez, and you haven’t really talked to him yet, so we’ll give that you opportunity to address him correctly.
What do you want to say to Abel Sanchez who is listening to you right now live?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I have nothing to say to him. He knows what I think of him.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Abel, what do you think about Canelo? He’s listening now. You’ve talked a lot about him, as well.
ABEL SANCHEZ: I talked about him because of what his actions have been and I think the consequences it has caused for us as a team here, the GGG team.
He’s an exceptional fighter. Two guys at the top of their game are going to duke is out on the 15th. I hope we get the kind of fight that we are expecting.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Gennady, is there anything you would like to say to him?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: Well, I want to tell him that we should be ready for the fight. You know, we should be ready for his fight for us. We should be ready for his fight for our fans. We should get ready. I think we should both be in the best shape for this fight, and the better we will be for this fight; the more, the sweetest taste the victory will have for us.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Canelo, you have the floor. What do you have to say to Gennady Golovkin?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Nothing. We’ll see you September 15.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: And to all of you watching, is there anything you would like to say to GGG? Is there anything you would like to say to Canelo? Let us know in the comments section below for a chance to have your questions answered directly. But before we check out what the fans have been posting in that comments section below, let me ask you one question to all of you in our Facebook Live broadcast.
I want to start with Gennady Golovkin. Why aren’t we all hanging out in the same room? Why are you in Big Bear, California? Why is Canelo in Guadalajara, and why aren’t we shaking hands in person?
GGG, I’ll start with you.
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: We are in a space, we are in a room where it’s best for all of us and which is more comfortable for all of us. It’s better to meet on September 15 and show all the best of what we can demonstrate.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Canelo, usually when we are promoting a fight, we have both boxers looking at each other, sometimes shaking hands, sometimes having a little more action than that.
Why didn’t you want to face Gennady Golovkin before September 15? Why didn’t you want to be in the same room with him at the same time?
CANELO ALVAREZ: I assure you we’ll see each other face-to-face before September 15. We already got the tour and we already got the promotion. It wasn’t necessary for this one. But I’ll see him very soon.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: That’s fair. Well, we certainly have a lot to look forward to this September 15. In just a moment, we will open the phones to ask questions from members of the media.
Q. This is for Canelo. As a Mexican, do you believe Abel Sanchez deserves a handshake? Can you actually shake Abel Sanchez’s hands?
CANELO ALVAREZ: He deserves that and much more.
Q. Canelo, real quick, do you feel like the things that Abel and Gennady are saying to you about making this a toe-to-toe fight just a tactic to draw you in, when it may make more sense for you to box yourself to victory in this fight?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Yes, that’s probably their tactic. You know what, the sentiment that I have inside of me, it’s going to help me a lot, intelligently, to bring out what I have to do. I know what I have to do.
Q. This first question is for Canelo. There are lots of rumours that have spread around about you wearing a knee wrap in different pictures. Is there anything wrong with the knee and can you address that?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Simply put, it’s a brace just to support. I’ve been training really hard. It’s part of rehabilitation and I’ve been working really hard, and that is not going to be a problem, trust me.
Q. The numbers from your last fight show that GG out-landed you by 49 punches and out-threw you by 198. Do you feel that you need to increase your work rate in order to win the rematch?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Yes, that’s part of the plan and part of what we are working on. Yes, we know what we have to do, and yes, we have to throw more punches. To win fights, you have to throw punches, and that’s what I do in all my fights.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Now it’s time to take a look at the questions and comments for the fighters and their teams on Facebook Live. We’ll go straight to that. We’ll start with Rob.
Q. Asking them both, what will be the difference from the first fight? Gennady, what do you think will be the difference from fight No. 1?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: I think this fight will be interesting. It will be tougher fight. It will be fiercer fight and I think we made our conclusion from the first fight, and this fight will be more colorful and more interesting.
Q. Canelo, what do you think the difference will be from the first fight?
CANELO ALVAREZ: Without a doubt it’s going to be a different fight. It’s going to be a better fight.
Look, we know what we have to do. I’m going it take even a stronger strategy, a better strategy, and it’s going to be a much better fight. We already know each other. Now we know what we have to do.
Q. To Team GGG, are you doing anything different in this camp from the last time you fought Canelo?
ABEL SANCHEZ: We prepare ourselves and we prepare Gennady to be the best Gennady can be. We won the first fight. A lot of people know we won the last fight. He knows he won the last fight.
Some adjustments obviously will be made in camp but Gennady fights in a style that is not only fan-pleasing but a style that he has mastered with a 23-knockout streak, in, what, 20 defenses, making it the 21st on the 15th. I think that’s the best in history. He’s tied Hopkins’ record. He’s got a knockout ratio, the best in middleweight history. I think the changes are going to be minimal. But I think it’s all going to defend if Canelo brings his courage.
Q. Gennady, are you doing anything different for this second fight, this rematch?
GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN: No. As always, I’m going 100 percent what I need to do and I’ll be ready 100 percent for this fight.
Q. Can you talk about your impressive footwork and mobility in the first fight, and now that you’ve had surgery on your knee, do you think your footwork might be even better in the rematch?
CANELO ALVAREZ: That’s always been part of my arsenal. I know how to move inside the ring. The knee is not a problem. We’ve been working hard now and we’ve been training here and it hasn’t given me any issues and if it does come up during the fight that it gives me problems, we’ll already have a Plan B, a strategy, behind that, as well.
MAURICIO PEDROZA: Thank you, everyone, for joining us today watching this special Facebook live GGG special event. A reminder that tickets for September 15 are on sale now and they are going fast. You can also join Canelo GGG September 15 live from the T Mobile Arena on Pay-Per-View.
Breaking News: Canelo-GGG II On For September 15th
By: Sean Crose
— Oscar De La Hoya (@OscarDeLaHoya) June 13, 2018
“I’m happy to inform that we have a fight September 15!!!! #CaneloGGG2 Feliz De informar que si tenemos pelea Septiembre 15!!! #CaneloGGG2 ”
With the above Tweet, Oscar De La Hoya, head of Golden Boy Promotions announced Canelo Alvarez-Gennady Golovkin II, a rematch that seemed like it might not ever happen. The match was due to go down last spring in Las Vegas, but Canelo tested positive for having the banned substance Clenbuterol in his system. Not only did the much hyped bout fall through, Canelo was suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for six months, meaning he was effectively out of the fight game for half a year.
To make matters even more vexing, Golovkin was hesitant to sign on to a rematch at a later date until he felt he was getting the money he was worth. Although Canelo is clearly the more lucrative and famous of the two fighters, many feel Golovkin won their original bout last fall, even though it was controversially ruled a draw. What’s more, Golovkin expressed hostility towards Canelo because he felt the man had cheated. For his part, Canelo denied that he intentionally took any banned substances, but the resentment was still in play.
Up until Wednesday afternoon, it appeared that negotiations might fall through, with a De La Hoya imposed deadline coming and going. Things were finally settled once and for all, however, and now fans can expect the long awaited fight to finally go down on September 15th.
Tony Bellew vs. David Haye Preview
By: Ste Rowen
By the time Tony Bellew and David Haye share the ring for a second time, 427 days will have passed since their first meeting. The encounter that many viewed as a mismatch, turned into one of the upsets of the year as Liverpudlian, Bellew, dropped an injured Haye en route to an 11th round stoppage that saw Haye through the ropes, as well as his corner throwing in the towel. Few had predicted a Tony Bellew win, though many caveated their prediction with, ‘as long as Haye’s body holds up.’
Photo Credit: Eddie Hearn Twitter Account
It didn’t. Haye was dominant in the opening rounds, but Bellew’s perhaps, underrated defensive abilities were on show as, even before the injury occurred, Tony was making David miss a number of wide, heavy shots.
In the 6th round Haye’s Achilles tendon ruptured, and his game plan switched in a heartbeat from a ‘search & destroy’ mission, to survival at all costs. Bellew took to the centre of the ring and began to dominate until the penultimate round when, eventually he landed a left hook, which was enough to fire Haye through the ropes and signal the end of a crazy turn of events in London.
The former unified cruiserweight champion did live to fight another day, this Saturday to be exact, even if the fight has had to be postponed from its original December date, but there’s not the same confidence that was there before the last bout. No statements such as, ‘I’ve never had a fight where I really wanted to cave someone’s skull in like this.’
No, this time the Hayemaker, 28-3 (26KOs) is taking a more sombre approach to his words ahead of Saturday night. Speaking at Monday’s press conference with a very much, pro Tony Bellew crowd in Liverpool, Haye said,
‘Last time round I was a bit angry, this time round not so much. I didn’t believe Tony Bellew had what it took to beat me. On my worst night I was terribly wrong. He raised his game way more than any of his prior fights and I expect exactly the same thing again on Saturday night.’
‘I’m gonna do what I tried to do last time and failed miserably; and you guys are, unfortunately gonna see the end of Tony Bellew. My speed, timing is back. It’s all back.’
His opponent however was rightfully lapping it up in his hometown press conference.
‘I’m gonna do exactly what I done in the first fight. You’re going to miss and you’re going to miss by miles…On Saturday mate, it comes to an end. For the first time in your whole career, you are actually fighting for your career.’
‘David isn’t back to win world titles, David’s back to rob the bank and he’s trying to do it with as little risk as possible…The mistake he made is he picked this fat, little, scouse, cruiser with a mouth to try and make that against, ‘cos he thought it would be an easy fight.’
‘Saturday night guys, it’s time to go to war and your career my son, ends in a beat.’
Saturday night’s venue will once again be London’s O2 arena, but this time round, it feels a lot harder to assess and predict what eventually goes down when the first bell sounds. If he’s smart Haye’s tactics will reflect his more thoughtful approach to the rematch so far. Last time round it was clear he wanted the knockout, and he wanted it early. There was no doubt, as confirmed by Haye himself, that the Bermondsey native, massively underestimated Bellew’s resilience to take a punch, as well as avoid the pressure the former WBA heavyweight champion would put the ‘Bomber’ under early on in the bout.
By Saturday it will be just under 2 years since Bellew’s greatest night, when he knocked out Ilunga Makabu at Goodison Park, to win the WBC cruiserweight title. Since then, though only fighting twice, he’s kept the hype train rolling, and wants to keep steaming down the track after this weekend’s bout, eyeing up future battles with Tyson Fury, or a supposedly retired, Andre Ward.
For Haye though, his greatest night, depending on what you view as more significant, was either over 10 years ago when he KO’d Jean Marc Mormeck to win the WBA & WBC cruiserweight belts, or his 2009 victory for the WBA heavyweight belt, defeating man mountain, Nikolay Valuev. In fact, it’s been almost 6 years since his last significant victory, when he made lightwork of Dereck Chisora in 5 rounds.
The famous saying goes, ‘Speed kills’. Well in boxing, so does inactivity. By normal standards, Tony Bellew, 29-2-1 (19KOs) is an inactive boxer, when you compare him to Haye though, he’s virtually Sugar Ray Robinson fighting once a month.
This time round, rather than thought’s of ‘I wonder if Haye’s body will hold up.’, there feels like an inevitability of, ‘When will it fail?’. When it comes to Tony Bellew though, fight fans have just come to expect the unexpected.
Breaking: May 5th Canelo-GGG Fight Is Officially Off
By: Sean Crose
“I am sad and feel powerless,” Canelo Alvarez told the media on Tuesday, “that this fight cannot happen now.” And with that, all remaining hope for the superfight between Canelo (49-1-2) and middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin (37-0-1) going down this spring vanished. Canelo tested positive on two occasions this past February for having the banned substance Clenbuterol in his system. He was subsequently suspended (albeit temporarily) by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, leaving the Las Vegas based Golovin rematch (the two men first fought to a controversial draw last autumn), which was scheduled to occur on May 5th, in serious doubt.
Canelo took the opportunity Tuesday to argue that he never took a banned substance intentionally. “I have always operated as a clean fighter,” he said. “I have always taken clean substances.” He’ll have a chance to argue his case before the Commission on an April 18th hearing. If the Commission decides to be firm, the Mexican star can be suspended for six months or more. Other states are apt to follow the Nevada ruling, whatever it should be, meaning that a suspension would likely carry over throughout the United States, where Canelo has proven to be most successful as a prize fighter.
“I will do whatever I need to do,” he said, “to demonstrate I have never taken this substance (intentionally).” Seeing his reputation as an honest player in a dirty game take a serious hint, Canelo took time to lament his situation. “It saddens me that people are accusing me of doing something improper,” he claimed. Canelo also said that he was going to henceforth be more mindful about what goes in his body. “From here on out, I will take increased precautions to ensure this will never happen again,” he said.
Team Canelo made it clear during the conference that they still wish for a Canelo-GGG rematch to go down, perhaps in August or September. As for Golovkin, it looks as if he’s preparing to face another opponent on May 5th. Names such as Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan (27-2), Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade (25-0) and WBO super middleweight champ Gilberto Ramirez (37-0) have all popped up. Golovkin’s promotional company has also requested a permit for May 5th at the MGM Grand in Vegas (the Canelo rematch was supposed to take place at the T-Mobile Arena). As of press time, no opponent for Golovkin had been announced.
Golovkin has unleashed on Canelo through the media since news of the drug tests broke. He’s accused his opponent as having cheated before and has also stated that Canelo has been unfairly supported by the powers that be. On Tuesday, Canelo’s response was restrained. “What Golovkin or his team say does not bother me at all,” he said. ”They’re not experts, doctors.” Canlo had a doctor on hand who stated the levels of Clenbuteral that Canelo tested for were in line for levels of those who have consumed contaminated meat. Intent, however, did not come into play in regards to the Commission’s handing down of a suspension.
Canelo vs. GGG 2 Has “Big Drama” Heading Into Their Rematch
By: Bryant Romero
Prior to Canelo’s positive drug test for Clenbuterol being made public two weeks ago, there were many in the boxing media wondering just how dull and uninteresting the buildup would be heading into their May 5 rematch. Canelo and Golovkin are no doubt exciting fighters to watch inside the ring, but they’re not the most polarizing personalities outside the ring. This is the spark and controversy the rematch needed and this writer doesn’t see it as a bad thing. Not to say that the handlers of this event purposely released this information in order to build up hype. But no one can argue that the rivalry between Canelo/GGG and the lead up to their May 5 rematch has gotten a lot more interesting.
Golovkin erupted and made some very strong allegations at Canelo and his promoter Oscar De La Hoya during his meet with media members this past Tuesday.
“I told you, it’s not Mexican meat. This is Canelo. This is his team. This is his promotion, Canelo is cheating. They’re using drugs, and everybody is just trying to pretend it’s not happening.
“It’s pretty obvious when (Canelo’s) muscles were enlarged and with traces of injections, which were visible, “ Golovkin said. “ I can talk about Oscar De La Hoya too. He is also not clean, he’s dirty.”
Obviously, Golovkin is not buying the excuse Canelo and his handlers have put forth in saying the reasoning for the two positive drug tests last month was due to consumption of contaminated meat. Golovkin also feels Canelo was dirty in the first fight and believes that he is being protected and coddled by the Nevada state athletic commission.
Golovkin and his team have shown great concern heading into this rematch and that perhaps they’re heading into this fight on an uneven playing field. While GGG can certainly have his suspicions about the reasoning for Canelo testing positive for Clenbuterol and question the investigation that is being put forth by the Nevada commission, the comments he made could have very well earned him a lawsuit in the near future.
Golden Boy Promotions President Eric Gomez told boxingscene “it’s defamation and we’re going to take appropriate action.”
Gomez sees Golovkin statements as a sign of fear, a lack of confidence, and is simply looking for a way out.
“It sounds like he wants out of the fight, he doesn’t sound confident.” Gomez told Boxingscene. “If he wants out of the fight, he should say so.”
Gomez is 100 percent confident that the fight will go ahead on May 5. Canelo has since passed subsequent tests while the Nevada commission is currently investigating and has yet to give a ruling on the matter. All signs point to the fight going ahead on May 5.
Canelo vs GGG 2 has “big drama” heading into their rematch and there is certainly a lot more bad blood between the camps. Expect a more explosive fight on May 5 and the controversy surrounding the rematch is not necessarily a bad thing. Because if it wasn’t for these turn of events, what exactly would anybody in the media be talking about when it comes to this rematch had the positive tests not been made public?
T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas to Host Rematch Between Canelo and Golovkin
Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion Canelo Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) and WBC/WBA/IBF/IBO Middleweight World Champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) will return to
T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas for a highly anticipated rematch on Cinco de Mayo. The first fight between the two world-class athletes sold out in only two weeks, and tickets will surely be in even higher demand as both fighters have promised they will not leave the rematch in the judges’ hands. Canelo vs. GGG 2 will take place Saturday, May 5 and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at a special time of 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
Photo Credit: Golden Boy Promotions
Tickets for Canelo vs. GGG 2 will go on sale Tuesday, Feb. 27 at 10:00 a.m. PT, and are priced at $5,000, $2,500, $2,000, $1,500, $800, $700, $500 and $300, not including applicable service charges and taxes. There will be a limit of 10 per person at the $5,000, $2,500, $2,000, $1,500, $800 and $700 price levels with a limit of two (2) per person at the $500 and $300 price levels. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call 888-9-AXS-TIX (888-929-7849). Tickets also will be available for purchase at www.t-mobilearena.com or www.axs.com.
The two fighters will meet for the first time since last September’s controversial draw at an event at Microsoft Square at L.A. LIVE Tuesday, Feb. 27. More details will be announced shortly.
“I am happy to return for the fourth time at T-Mobile Arena for this historic rematch against [Gennady] Golovkin,” said Canelo. “I opened the doors of this place to the world of boxing, and it has become my favorite venue. This is where the fight started, and this is where I’ll end it by doing what I and my fans most desire: knocking him out.”
“It feels right that the rematch returns to the scene of the crime,” said Golovkin. “This time there will be no drama with a decision. I won the first fight and left the ring as world champion wearing all the belts. And I am going to win the second fight. It is going to be a record fight and a golden night for me and boxing at T-Mobile Arena.”
Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, Oscar De La Hoya, said, “There is no better place to host the historic rematch between Canelo and Golovkin than T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Las Vegas on a fight weekend during Cinco de Mayo is electric, and I know fans will travel from around the world to be here to participate in the celebratory atmosphere. Historic boxing matches like Canelo vs. GGG 2 belong in a place like Las Vegas, which offers fans the full and rich experience they are looking for on a big fight weekend.”
“The last time they met in the ring, the tie went to the runner — Canelo Alvarez,” said Tom Loeffler, promoter of Golovkin. “I think there is only one place to settle this dispute between the two best middleweights. The most appropriate place for the rematch is back at T-Mobile Arena. The venue was a sensational host to Team Golovkin and the fans were terrific. We’ll see if T-Mobile Arena remains Canelo’s favorite venue after he becomes Gennady’s twentieth and record-tying title defense.”
Richard Sturm, President of Sports and Entertainment for MGM Resorts International, said, “T-Mobile Arena is the ideal venue to host a championship boxing event of this magnitude. We look forward to celebrating Cinco de Mayo weekend with sports fans in Las Vegas and worldwide for what should be one of boxing’s premier rematches.”
Canelo vs. GGG 2 is a 12-round fight for the middleweight championship of the world presented by Golden Boy Promotions and GGG Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING,” Hennessy, “Never Stop, Never Settle,” Fred Loya Insurance, and Fathom Events. The event will take place Saturday, May 5 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at a special time of 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
The Rematch to End the Controversy: Canelo vs. Golovkin 2
By: Ste Rowen
The rematch boxing fans have been waiting for has finally been announced, and for reasons I don’t quite understand, it was Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson who had the honour of letting the boxing world know that 2018 was continuing where 2017 had left off. Golovkin vs ‘Canelo’ Alvarez will take place on Cinco de Mayo weekend, with the venue yet to be confirmed.
The rematch announcement was certainly an upgrade on the first fight’s, where Alvarez treated us to 12 rounds of pointlessness – beating up Julio Cesar Chavez Jr – before WBA, WBC & IBF champion, GGG joined the Ring middleweight belt-holder between the ropes, and gave the fans what they were all really there for.
Hype subsequently ensued back in the summer of 2017, followed by controversy when in September, the two pound-for-pound fighters collided in Vegas. The fight didn’t disappoint but then again, neither did the consistency with which big fights involving the Mexican somehow end up favouring him.
Judge, Adalaide Byrd, just like Levi Martinez (vs Lara) before her, C.J. Ross (vs Mayweather) before him and Stanley Christodoulou (vs Trout) before her, scored the fight heavily in favour of the Mexican with a scorecard of 118-110. In comparison to her two fellow judges, Dave Moretti and Don Trella who scored the fight 115-113 GGG and 114-114 respectively. If anything, Don Trella got off lightly.
It’s unfair to completely dismiss Saul Alvarez though. He contributed to the fight, firing off the higher quality combinations and more frequent body shots. However, one of the lasting images from GGG vs Canelo 1 will forever be a huge right-hand landing on the granite chin of Golovkin and the Kazakh, unflinchingly, continuing his attack.
The CompuBox numbers showed that Gennady out landed Canelo 218-169, landing more punches in 10 of the 12 rounds. But don’t take mine or CompuBox’s, or 54/69 pro boxer’s and writer’s word as gospel, watch and re-watch the fight. I wonder if Byrd has.
Another high-profile rematch takes place on the 5th May when Tony Bellew and David Haye step into the ring for their rescheduled second bout, so the more committed UK viewers should be in for a long, eventful night. At the time of writing Haye is not injured – Good news! 94 days still to go till fight night – Bad news.
In the GGGCanelo2 announcement clip, the Rock reassured fans, ‘I goddamn guarantee you, it aint gonna be another draw.’ But then again, Tyson Fury said Charles Martin would knockout Anthony Joshua, so I don’t know if I can really trust you Dwayne.
Let’s hope controversy isn’t the word of the day when the rematch comes around – Has anyone checked what Adalaide’s Cinco de Mayo plans are?
The Rematch is On! Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin to Battle on Cinco De Mayo
A sequel to the most anticipated boxing event in years will arrive on Cinco De Mayo as Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion Canelo Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) and WBC/WBA/IBF/IBO Middleweight World Champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) will clash in a historic and highly anticipated 12-round rematch Saturday, May 5. The event will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
Details regarding venue and tickets will be announced shortly.
In September of 2017, Canelo and GGG met in a battle of the world’s two top middleweights, battling toe-to-toe over 12 rounds of high drama that ended in a split draw. The fight drew a record crowd for an indoor boxing event in Las Vegas, selling out the T-Mobile Arena in less than two weeks and bringing legions of fans from Mexico to Kazakhstan and everywhere in between.
Alvarez, the 27-year-old native of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, is the veritable face of boxing. After capturing two world titles and the lineal championship in the super welterweight division, Alvarez moved up to middleweight to capture the WBC, Lineal and Ring Magazine World Titles with a Nov. 2015 victory against Miguel Cotto. Alvarez has maintained his status as the lineal champion ever since, and in a historic Sept. 16 showdown last year, Alvarez fought to a 12-round split draw against Golovkin. Alvarez is eager to erase all doubts regarding his status as the best middleweight in the world on May 5.
“I’m delighted to once again participate in one of the most important boxing events in history,” said Canelo Alvarez. “This second fight is for the benefit and pleasure of all fans who desire to see the best fight the best. This time, [Gennady] Golovkin won’t have any excuses regarding the judges because I’m coming to knock him out.”
Golovkin, the 35-year-old wrecking ball of Karaganda, Kazakhstan, was a dominant amateur standout and Olympic Silver Medalist before turning professional in 2006. Since then, Golovkin has been on an historic trajectory, knocking out one opponent after another to unify the WBC, WBA, IBF and IBO World Middleweight Titles. During this run, Golovkin maintained an unblemished record that included a 23-fight knockout streak, which ended with a unanimous decision victory against Danny Jacobs in March 2017. In September of the same year, Golovkin went the distance in a historic split draw against Alvarez, which has merited a much-desired rematch in the eyes of boxing fans.
“I am ready to battle Canelo again and am happy he took this fight again,” said Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. “This is the fight the world wants. This is the fight boxing deserves. I didn’t agree with some of the judges’ decisions in the first fight. This time there will be no doubt. I am leaving the ring as THE middleweight champion of the world.”
“Canelo vs. Golovkin 2 will be boxing’s biggest and best event of 2018 as these two elite fighters once again go head-to-head to determine who is the best middleweight in the world,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “I expect we will see even more fireworks in the rematch as both fighters know there more is at stake now than before.”
“This is the fight boxing fans have been waiting for since the controversial outcome of last September, and the ONLY fight Gennady has wanted since that decision,” said Tom Loeffler, Promoter of Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. “Gennady is ready for this historic record-tying 20th title defense where he will demonstrate his superiority over Canelo. Gennady is on a mission to prove he is still the best middleweight in the world today and one of the best fighters of his era.”
“It’s a special moment for the sport when two of boxing’s most accomplished competitors-both in their prime- agree to meet again in the ring to settle who is the man in the middleweight division,” said Peter Nelson, Executive Vice President, HBO Sports. “Canelo vs. GGG 2 is the boxing event of the first half of 2018 and we are pleased to present it live on HBO Pay-Per-View.”
Canelo vs. Golovkin 2 is a 12-round fight for the middleweight championship of the world presented by Golden Boy Promotions and GGG Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate,”THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING,” Hennessy, “Never Stop, Never Settle,” Fred Loyal Insurance, Tsesnabank and Capital Holdings. The event will take place Saturday, May 5 and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
Alvarez vs. Golovkin II Close to a Deal
By: Eric Lunger
The sequel to September’s already-classic middleweight clash between Gennady “GGG” Golovkin and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is close to becoming a reality, according to recent reporting by Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times. Eric Gomez of Golden Boy Promotions told the Times that the parties were working on the final details, and that he (Gomez) was just waiting to hear back from Tom Loeffler, Golovkin’s promoter.
Photo Credit: HBO Boxing Twitter Account
Had fellow Golden Boy fighter David Lemieux won the WBO belt on Saturday night, there might have been an argument for putting Lemieux in the mix, before an Alvarez-Golovkin rematch. But Saunder’s masterclass against Lemieux, who looked oddly one-dimensional, put that argument to rest.
I think Alvarez vs. Golovkin II is the most exciting fight in boxing, and here’s a few reasons why.
Canelo is a major superstar in Mexico, and the fight will be on Cinquo De Mayo weekend. Canelo embraces his hard-scrabble origins in Guadalajara, but he has evolved into a composed, thoughtful, and humble representative of the proud Mexican boxing tradition. Golovkin, on the other hand, is a cross-cultural phenomenon with fans from all segments of the boxing public. Rising from the hard streets of Karaganda, Kazakhstan, the always smiling Golovkin has embraced a “Mexican” style, has embraced the Mexican-American fan base in southern California, and has a Mexican-American trainer. The story-lines in the fight are just so interesting and real.
If, and it’s still a big if, Saunders could fight Jacobs at Barclays Center in Brooklyn in April (as Jacobs has a date there already locked in, according to recent social media chatter), then we could see a valid middleweight unification tournament. The winner of Alvarez-Golovin against the winner of Jacobs-Saunders would crown the undisputed, unified middleweight champion of the world.
Unlike so many fights that are allowed to marinate too long — and I hate the term “marinate” – Alvarez vs. Golovkin is still a competitive athletic event. Yes, Golovkin will turn thirty-six in April. While that might be the upper limit for an elite boxer’s career, the Kazakh fighter is still at his prime, especially given his famous work ethic and the rigors of training with Abel Sanchez up in the mountains in Big Bear Lake. He certainly was fit to go twelve in the first fight. Alvarez, for his part, has grown as a fighter every time a top-level opponent is put in front of him. What new weapons will he have in his arsenal for the second bout?
Mayweather-McGregor II? Fool me Once Shame on You, Fool Me Twice Shame on me!
By: Ken Hissner
It’s rumored Floyd “Money” Mayweather and MMA’s Conor McGregor may have a rematch though it’s questionable if McGregor will try boxing again. Since both had big paydays that could change.
Mayweather may know that Chayaphon Moonsri, of Thailand just improved his record to 49-0 this past weekend tying Rocky Marciano’s record and pulling within one win of him. This could bring him “out of retirement” again.
The fight itself between Mayweather and McGregor was Mayweather throwing about three punches around for the first six rounds “carrying” McGregor. In the seventh he started opening up on McGregor ending the bout in the tenth round.
There are more welterweights that could bring a more attractive opponent for Mayweather, 50-0, like a pair of Philadelphian’s in former two division champion Danny “Swift” Garcia, 33-1, and contender “The New” Ray Robinson, 24-2. Even a Garcia and Robinson winner would be attractive.
Shawn Porter, 28-2-1, and Jesse Vargas, 27-2, would also be good opponents. We know he won’t be fighting 2-division champion Terance “Hunter” Crawford, 32-0, at this time but what a match that would be.
Possibly Mayweather would come back at super welterweight and meet WBC champ Jermell Charlo, 30-0. One thing for sure will be Mayweather doing the picking of an opponent if he does fight again!
Mayweather Still In Fighting Shape- Talk of McGregor Rematch
by Bryanna Fissori
Three months into retirement Floyd Mayweather Jr. is reportedly still training “like a maniac” and in fighting shape. His recent training video, recorded in his Las Vegas gym has inspired rumors of a comeback and potential rematch with his most recent opponent, Conor McGregor.
Given the amount of money made by everyone involved with the fight in August, it is not surprising that there is talk of doing it again. The cash is still being counted, but general totals have fight purses at $100 million for Mayweather and $30 million for McGregor prior to accounting for PPV buys, gate sales, sponsorship, etc.
The Mayweather Perspective
Mayweather is 40 years old and boasts an unblemished professional record of 50-0. This is the largest unbeaten winning streak in boxing history, beating out the previous record of 49-0 held by heavyweight Rocky Marciano who passed away in 1969.
This is Mayweather’s third attempt at retirement. He has previously returned to the ring primarily due to financial necessity after running into a number of problems with the IRS and the legal system. Mayweather asserts, that this time he is really done.
“You won’t see me in the ring no more. Any guy that’s calling me out? Forget it. I’m OK. I had a great career. I had a tremendous career,” said Mayweather. “I did walk away from this sport before. Very comfortable. I didn’t have to come back. But we do foolish things sometimes. All of us do foolish things. But I’m not a damn fool. If I see an opportunity to make $300-, $350 million in 36 minutes, why not? I had to do it. But this is the last one. You guys have my word.”
The McGregor Perspective
Conor McGregor is a 29 year old professional MMA fighter competing for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). McGregor’s bout against Mayweather was his boxing debut. He has been very clear that he would gladly rematch Mayweather should the opportunity arise.
In a recent Q&A session McGregor stated, “I’m not calling him out. I’ll sit back. We’ll see how he gets along with this round of money. Maybe I’ll get another call. Originally he was saying an MMA bout next. . . That’s what he said before the fight.”
McGregor is the UFC Lightweight Champion and will most likely have his next competition in the cage, though he has also shown interest in boxing again or spending some time in professional wrestling. Both boxing and professional wrestling have been known to produce solid paychecks in comparison to MMA.
There has also been talk of McGregor talking on former training partner Paulie Malignaggi in a boxing match. It is a match Malignaggi has requested following statements released to the media that McGregor had gotten the best of him during training camp.
Mayweather and MMA
Well, technically if Mayweather was to agree to a bout with MMA rules that wouldn’t have any effect on his assertion of retirement from boxing or his perfect record. The money would be good and the hype would be exciting.
McGregor has stated that he believes Mayweather could compete in mixed martial arts. “He has some very strong tools he could bring into an MMA game for sure.”
One of the most notable crossovers from boxing to MMA was boxer James Toney, who took on UFC fighter Randy Couture in 2010. The match went as expected with Couture out grappling the boxer. Other crossovers that shared as similar fate include Art Jimmerson who faces Royce Gracie in UFC 1 and Ricardo Mayorga who had a series of losses before calling it quits. There are numerous others who have found similar issues with the kicking and grappling aspects of the sport. One of the most recent examples is Bellator fighter Heather Hardy who was unable to outbox Kristina Williams who blooded the boxer with kicks and knees.
The key for Mayweather in an MMA bout would be defending takedowns and watching for kicks and knees, especially given his typical style of playing with his back against the ropes.
McGregor has some proving to do back in the UFC cage and will probably defend his MMA title before any serious considerations of re-entering the ring. In the mean time, Mayweather will count his money and keep training to stay relevant to the masses, teasing fans with a comeback. Is it possible? McGregor may be on to something in his statement that Mayweather’s finances could be the decision maker. Will it be MMA or Boxing? That will likely depend on what the fans are willing to pay the most for.
A Look into the Liam Smith and Liam Williams Rematch
By: Oliva McManus
No if’s, no but’s, this promises to be one of the most exciting nights of domestic boxing in recent memory – promoted by Frank Warren and live on BT Sport & BoxNation, the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle plays host to a night of sensational boxing on the 11th November, headlined by the rematch between Liam Smith and Liam Williams. Also on the card, and being previewed here, is Thomas Patrick Ward, Josh Leather and Nathan Gorman.
The main event has been in the works for the last 7 months following the controversial first bout between Williams and Smith – many had Williams leading on their card but with Smith coming stronger in the latter rounds. With an accidental clash of heads, that Williams maintains was intentional, and the ringside doctor considering it not serious enough for the fight to be waved off, Williams’ corner men took the decision to withdraw their fighter at the 9th round.
Since then the two fighters have been embroiled in a war of words both over social media and at press conferences to add a bitter tinge to this rivalry – which can only mean even more exciting action the second time round.
Williams (16-1-1) was born in Wales and before fighting Smith in April had an illustrious record including British, Commonwealth and WBO European Super Welterweight title’s – standing at 5”10, he has the ever so slight edge over the 5”9.5 Smith and is noticeable for keeping his head down when up-close with the opponent.
A brawler, when he lets his hands go, he has a lack of control which, in a way, is appealing. A really strong right hand hook, this was exemplified during his 11th round stoppage of Gary Corcoran – another fight of his in which there was a clash of head’s.
Don’t be mistaken though, Williams is patient in his style but when he senses a weakness, he moves quickly to exploit it. A strong left hand jab keeps the opponent at length before a useful flurry of shots softens up the opponent.
Smith (25-1-1) is undeniably the higher profile of the two fighters having held the WBO World Super Welterweight title between October 2015 and September 2016; after winning the belt against John Thompson, he made two successful defences against Jimmy Kilrain Kelly and Predrag Radosevic before travelling to America for a spirited 9th round loss against Saul Alvarez.
You can’t doubt the heart of Smith then and when he gets going, it’s hard to argue with his boxing ability either – tending to take to the centre of the ring, he is often said to “pick opponents off”, wearing them down with a constant barrage of shots before dismissing with them in the latter half of the fight.
With a tight defence, he himself is hard to breakdown but Williams exploited his lack of experience in not being the one in control but Smith will have hoped to have learned his lesson from that.
Armed with a deceptive knockout power, the Liverpudlian known as Beefy, likes to target the body of opponents with several sharp shots to the ribcage before targeting the head with repetitive jabs and then returning to the body.
The key unknown to this fight is emotion, it’s not often that you hear emotion spoke of in a boxing context but this is the first fight the two fighters have been in with a genuine dislike for the opponents so the question is, how will this change their game plan?
Next up is Thomas Patrick Ward (21-0) defending his BBBofC British Super Bantamweight title against Sean Davis (13-1) in a fight which is almost destined to go the distance – the duo’s 34 wins combined carry with them a mere two knockouts.
Ward had been a fighter that had gone very much under-the-radar on the domestic scene until May of this year – his 21st professional fight – when he fought James “Jazza” Dickens for the British title. Prior to that, his best victories were, arguably, against Robbie Turley (16-5) and Nasibu Ramadhan (17-5-1) which kind of tells you everything you need to know about the level of opponent he’d been up against.
You don’t need high class opposition to be able to show off your own high class skills, however, and Tommy Ward has impressed immensely whenever he’s been on display – easy on the eye, if you’re a boxing purist you’ll love him. Capable of withstanding attacks, his style is one where he waits for opponents to come forward before exploiting the gaps in their defence.
He’s a patient fighter – not boring though – and I think that’s highlighted by the fact that in his fight against Norbert Kalucza, last year, I counted about 20 consecutive seconds of him just standing in the middle of the ring toying with Kalucza, baiting him into an attack.
Aged just 23 years old the Birmingham-born super bantamweight finds himself already ranked 12th with the WBO and 4th with the EBU – if I were his promoter Frank Warren, I’d be targeting a scrap with European champion Abigail Medina where, were he to be successful, he would avenge his brother’s defeat earlier this year.
Davis, on the other hand, is 4 years older at 27 yet has the much shorter resume of a mere 14 fights. Despite that he comes into the bout with more prestigious victories including the likes of Jason Booth for the English title and Paul Economidies for the WBC International strap.
Showtime, as he’s known, carries the unique style of leaving his left hand hanging in front of the opposite fighter as a way of both measuring the reach but equally blind-siding the opponent before launching a hard, looping right hand – a shot that comes reigning down on the opponent from an oddly jolted knee position, allowing him to simultaneously connect and evade.
Although having never secured a knockout victory, I’d actually argue that Davis is the more powerful of the two fighters – neither laying claim to “power puncher” status, however – with a repetitive, concussive style of punches.
Against Gamal Yafai (at the time 11-0) in May, his defences were exploited as The Beast dropped the Hockley-resident on 6 separate occasions before dispatching with him convincingly in the 7th. Davis showed heart, that can’t be argued, but he was guilty of standing too square in front of Yafai and failed to maintain a sharp, astute defence with the body being a particular area of weakness.
In a real cross-roads fight, Davis will be hoping to restate his stature in the super bantamweight division – at least domestically, anyway – with the winner of this fight looking to push on for a shot at, at least, a European title. Who wins it? Tommy Ward for me but it’s a pick ‘em!
Josh Leather also features as he and Glenn Foot go to war for the IBF East/West Europe Super Lightweight Title – a belt that makes no logistical titular sense – the winner of which should receive an enhanced prestigious Top 15 Ranking with the organization.
At 12-0 Leather is already regarded as one of the hottest prospects in the super lightweight division, not just in Britain but globally – already ranked 14th with the IBF, he’ll be looking to stake his claim for a shot at the recently-crowned champion Sergei Lipinets by emphatically beating Glenn Foot on Saturday night.
From Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, the 25 year-old stands 5”10 and came into the pro ranks with a distinguished amateur record – the 2012 Lightweight ABA Champion – and whilst he hasn’t been particularly active since (averaging a mere 3 fights a year), his career has been going distinctly upwards in the last 18 months.
Armed with sudden explosivity, if he lands a right hand hook and feels it wobbled you then bam, before you know it, one, two, three, four, sharp, jading combination shots come in to both head and body.
Fighting with passion, Leather isn’t reckless, the young man is never afraid to bite down on the gum-shield and let sparks fly but he’ll do so with a degree of precision and aggressive that makes him a dangerous fighter to enrage.
Foot, from Sunderland, is an experienced domestic-level fighter having fought anywhere from the 140lb lightweight division all the way up to 161lbs (admittedly for only one fight), with most of his time spent around the 148lbs region.
Don’t let that be conflated with a lack of quality – let me stamp that out from the start – the 30 year-old has been in with some notable names such as Sam Eggington, Akeem Ennis Brown, Kirk Goodings, Adam Little, Philip Bowes and Jason Cook.
At 21-2 his losses have come against Eggington and Ennis Brown, but nonetheless Foot possess an array of impressive attributes – the most important of all being sheer grit and durability, a man that is hard to break down is always going to be a half-decent boxer and this particular man has proven to be rather more than half-decent.
A high guard compliments his ramrod territorial jabs that keep foes at bay before the Black Cats fan exploits their fatigue during the latter rounds of a fight. Slower on his feet than Leather with less firepower in his armoury, it could be a tough fight if Glenn doesn’t take control right from the early stages.
The final major fight is Nathan Gorman against Mohamed Soltby for the WBC International Silver Heavyweight Title; Gorman (10-0) was originally slated to face Nick Webb for the BBBofC English Heavyweight title and despite rumours that Webb withdrew from the fight, it has emerged that Gorman was actually the one to pull out, reasoning that they “wanted to go a different route”.
Both promoted by, hall of fame promoter, Frank Warren, the likely outcome of this fight is leaving fight fans in the lurk with British boxing diehards labelling Nathan Gorman as one of the bright hopes for heavyweight boxing and German followers backing Soltby as their man to cause an upset on foreign soil.
Neither come with particularly strong names on their resume; Dominic Akinlade and Kamil Sokolowski being the most forthcoming for Gorman – a former Central Area champion – and Laszlo Hubert and Zoltan Csala the two main names for Solbty.
Soltby, 13-0, and Gorman both come to the ring with 8 knockouts apiece and come to the ring with very similar fighting styles – both determined to go after the opposition from the first whistle in order to force the stoppage as opposed to waiting for a more natural opportunity. Gorman has faster footwork but Soltby carries a 1.5inch height advantage and often swings his head back in to keep the other fighter always thinking.
Being friends with Soltby on Snapchat (shameless plug, there), he’s literally not been out of the gym for the past few months so conditioning isn’t going to be an issue and Gorman certainly looks like he could be the real so I, for one, am absolutely ecstatic for this fight which is going to be one of two things – fireworks or bust.
In a night of packed action, the rematch between Liam Smith and Liam Williams is undeniably the one that draws the eye – with the winner looking for an immediate return to the world scene – but a complimentary undercard from top to bottoms looks set to keep the Newcastle crows, as well as viewers at home, on the edge of their seat. No if’s, no but’s.
Wilder Can Answer Some Questions Saturday Night
By: Eric Lunger
WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (38-0, 37 KOs) makes his sixth title defense this Saturday night against former champ Bermane Stiverne (25-2, 21 KOs) at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NYC. Wilder won the belt in January of 2015, defeating Stiverne in a 12 round unanimous decision, so what relevance does a second go-round have, especially when the first fight was not very competitive?
The answer to that question lies partially in what happened last weekend in Cardiff, Wales. Anthony Joshua, who dramatically dethroned the great Wladimir Klitschko last April, looked less than spectacular against the crafty and difficult-to-hit Carlos Takam. With a potential showdown with Joshua in the near future on the line, what questions can the Bronze Bomber answer this Saturday night which might help seal the deal?
We know that Wilder has KO power, but can he box? He’ll need more than power to hang with AJ. The Alabama native has a classic (and devastating) one-two, but has Wilder become a more multi-dimensional fighter? It would be great to see some variety from Deontay, some inside game, for example, or some new use of footwork and angles. The knock on Wilder has been that, while he has plenty of power, a technically proficient fighter would exploit those wide and wild punches that Wilder has thrown in the past. A tighter, more controlled performance from Wilder might silence that type of criticism.
Where is Wilder in terms of conditioning? The Bomber is known for staying in fighting trim, whereas at times Joshua looked tired, and seemed to be carrying too much weight for his frame. A lean and efficient Wilder might pose some real trouble for AJ, especially if he can take the British star into the late rounds.
Does Wilder need to score a dramatic knockout in order to stoke interest in a Joshua match-up? English promoter Eddie Hearn will not want to risk his star’s “zero” until conditions are optimal. There is already a high level of interest in the fight among boxing fans on both sides of the Atlantic — an exclamation point by Wilder would only add fuel to the fire. And a dominant win would make it harder for Joshua’s team to justify an interim opponent, especially after taking Takam deep into the fight and winning on a questionable stoppage.
The action will be live this Saturday night on Showtime (9 PM ET/6 PM PT)
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Lipinets vs. Kondo, Porter vs. Granados, Wilder vs. Stiverne
By: William Holmes
Last Saturday night Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua was able to successfully defend his belt against an overmatched Carlos Takam, but looked less than impressive in doing so.
This Saturday night the WBC Heavyweight Champion, Deontay Wilder, will look to defend his title against Bermane Stiverne in a rematch of a fight that Wilder convincingly won the first time.
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
Two other bouts will also be televised. Shawn Porter will look to get back into the welterweight title picture when he faces Adrian Granados in a WBC Welterweight Title eliminator. The first bout of the night will be for the vacant IBF Junior Welterweight Title and will be between Sergey Lipinets and Akihiro Kondo.
This card will take place at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York and will be televised live on Showtime.
The following is a preview of the three televised bouts.
Sergey Lipinets (12-0) vs. Akihiro Kondo (29-6-1); IBF Junior Welterweight Title
The opening bout of the night will be between Sergey Lipinets, a highly ranked prospect from Kazakhstan, and Akihiro Kondo, a tough rugged veteran from Japan.
Lipinets, at 28, is four years younger than Kondo but will be giving up about one inch in height. They both have notable power. Lipinets has ten career stoppage victories including four of his past five bouts. Kondo has sixteen stoppage victories including five straight KO/TKO wins.
Lipinets has been fairly active and fought three times in 2016 and once in 2017. Kondo fought twice in 2017 and four times in 2016.
Lipinets is also a former WAKO World Full Contact Kicking Boxing Champion at Light Welterweight.
Lipinets, despite only having twelve professional fights, has only faced on opponent with a losing record since the start of his professional career. He has already defeated the likes of Clarence Booth, Leonardo Zappavigna, Walter Castillo, and Haskell Rhodes.
Kondo has never fought as a professional outside of Japan. More specifically, he never fought outside of Korakuen Hall in Japan as a professional. His list of defeated opponents is less than impressive and includes boxers such as Komsan Polsan, Shogo Yamaguchi, and Ryuji Migaki. His losses were to Nihito Arakawa, Yoshitaka Kato, Tomoya Yamada, and Rick Sismundo.
Kondo will likely be a tough opponent that has the ability to go the distance, but his six losses in Japan are hard to overlook as well as his lack of a notable victory over a well known opponent. Lipinets should win, but he may have to box conservatively to avoid a shocking knockout loss and win a safe decision victory.
Shawn Porter (27-2-1) vs. Adrian Granados (18-5-2); Welterweights
Shawn Porter is another boxer looking to get back into title contention as he faces Adrian Granados in the welterweight division.
Porter is two years older than Granados but still in his athletic prime at the age of thirty. He will be giving up two inches in height and about four and a half inches in reach to the taller Granados.
Both boxers has fairly successful amateur careers. Porter was a US National Golden Gloves Champion while Granados was a Junior Golden Gloves National Champ.
Both boxers have been fairly inactive the past two years. They both only fought once in 2016 and once in 2017.
Porter has higher number of knockouts. He has stopped seventeen of his opponents while Granados has stopped twelve. Porter also has the better resume as a professional. He has defeated the likes of Andre Berto, Adrien Broner, Erick Bone, Paul Malignaggi, Devon Alexander, Julio Diaz, Phil Lo Greco, and Ray Robinson. His losses were to Keith Thurman and Kell Brook.
Granados lost a close fight to Adrien Broner and scored a big upset over Amir Imam. However, he has lost to the likes of Brad Solomon, Felix Diaz, Frankie Gomez, and a Joe Juan Fuentes.
Granados is a viable opponent because of his close fight with Adrien Broner and his upset victor over Amir Imam, but Porter is too experienced to lose a fight over an opponent like Granados at this stage of his career.
Deontay Wilder (38-0) vs. Bermane Stiverne (25-2-1); WBC Heavyweight Title
The man event of the evening is between Deontay Wilder and Bermane Stiverne for the WBC Heavyweight Title. They previously met in January of 2015, a fight which went the full twelve rounds and saw Wilder win a comfortable decision.
Wilder was originally scheduled to face Luis Ortiz, but a positive drug test by Ortiz forced the cancellation of that bout.
Wilder will have a five inch height and a three inch reach advantage over Stiverne. He is also seven years younger than his opponent. Stiverne, at the age of thirty eight, will likely have a very hard time getting another title shot if he’s not successful on Saturday.
Wilder has unbelievable knockout power. He has stopped thirty seven of his opponents and the only man to take him to the distance was Bermane Stiverne. Stiverne has twenty one stoppage victories on his resume but has only won one of his last five fights by stoppage.
Inactivty will hurt Stiverne. This will be his first fight in nearly two years. He last fought on November 14th of 2015. Wilder fought twice in 2016 and once in 2017.
Both boxers have a decent amateur background, but Wilder is the only one of the two to have medaled in the Summer Olympics.
Wilder has defeated the likes of Gerald Washington, Chris Arreola, Artur Szpilka, Eric Molina, Bermane Stiverne, Malik Scott, Siarhei Liakhovich, Audley Harrison, and Kelvin Price. Stiverne has defeated the likes of Derric Rossy, Chris Arreola, Ray Austin, and Kertson Manswell. His losses were to Deontay Wilder and Demetrice King, who has a record of 11-15 at the time.
It’s hard to imagine Stiverne having a better shot now, at the age of thirty eight, than he did two years ago, especially with his inactivity. This wasn’t Wilder’s first choice for an opponent, but it’s an opponent that he should feel fairly confident that he can beat, again.
Does Saul “Canelo” Alvarez Deserve a Rematch with GGG Golovkin?
By: Ken Hissner
This writer’s favorite boxer today is none other than Gennady “GGG” Golovkin who holds the WBA, WBC, IBF and IBO titles in the middleweight division. He just came off of a disputed draw with former super welterweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and there is talk of a Golovkin-Alvarez rematch.
Golovkin had his toughest match as champion in March defeating a questionable overweight Danny Jacobs. If Alvarez deserves a rematch with Golovkin than what does Jacobs deserve? Too many writers and fans have been critical of Golovkin who comes from Kazakhstan and lives in L.A.
Golovkin was a Silver Medalist in the 2004 Olympics. In his eighteenth fight in August of 2010 he stops Milton Nunez, 21-1-1 for the interim WBA middleweight title. In his next fight in December 2010 he stops Nilson Julio Tapia, 14-2-1 for the vacant WBA title. Tapia had defeated Jorge Sebastian Heiland, 16-1, defending his WBA Fedelatin title to earn this fight. Golovkin made 13 title defenses of the WBA title and added the interim WBC title stopping Marco Antonio Rubio, 59-6-1, in October of 2014. When he met David Lemieux, 34-1 who in his previous fight won the vacant IBF title defeating Hassan Ndam Njkam, 31-1, who is now the WBA No. 1 contender, he had his second belt.
Alvarez in March of 2011 wins the WBC Super welterweight title and defends it 5 times and in his next defense he wins the WBA title in April of 2013 defeating Austin Trout, 26-0. In his next fight in September he loses a lopsided decision on this writer’s scorecard though two judges and one that needed glasses had it a draw for a majority win.
In November of 2015 he defeated Miguel Cotto for the WBC middleweight title though only weighing 155 lbs. Golovkin by then had the interim WBC title. Alvarez didn’t want to meet Golovkin at that time so he gives up the title. In September of 2016 he wins the WBO super welterweight title stopping Liam Smith, 23-0-1. At that time the Alvarez camp claimed they wanted to fight Golovkin. Meanwhile that same month Golovkin stops IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook, 36-0, in the UK.
In March WBA World middleweight champion Danny Jacobs, 32-1, gives Golovkin a run for his money losing a close decision. At the day before the fight weigh-in both boxers make 160. The day of the fight weigh-in Golovkin adds 10 lbs. moving up to 170. Jacobs refuses to get re-weighed so he must have been at least 180? Jacobs fought the entire fight to the surprise of this writer southpaw. This writer had it 7-5 in rounds for Golovkin. Suddenly WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders, 24-0, decides he wants to fight Golovkin. Was it because as a southpaw he felt Jacobs did well so why not me?
In his next fight Alvarez finally goes in over 155 at 165 and defeats Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr., 50-2-1, in May of 2017, over 12 rounds. It was not an impressive performance on neither boxer’s part. Instead of Golovkin going for all the titles against Saunders he decides to go for the big cash cow in Alvarez in September. On the same day in the UK Saunders decisions Willie Monroe, Jr., 21-2, who Golovkin had stopped over 2 years previously.
The fight that Oscar de La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions predicted a war from the opening round didn’t quite turn out that way. It seems when you feel the power of Golovkin opponents seem to go to “plan B”. In the case of Alvarez he decided to “run” and fight when he was forced to. If Golovkin would have fought the way Alvarez did they would have called him a “coward!” This writer had it 8-4 in rounds for Golovkin. As the scores were being announced giving Golovkin the well-deserved win from the first judge comes a 118-110 from a judge whose scorecard this writer would call at best “questionable!” Then the final judge’s score was a draw.
Was it another black eye for boxing?
Now Tom Loeffler who promotes Golovkin may have second thoughts of a return match being held again in Nevada. I wonder why? Are you kidding? This writer’s advice to the Golovkin team would be to have Golovkin go for the final belt of Saunders while Alvarez can fight the winner of Jacobs and Luis Arias, 18-0, bout in November. Jacobs is currently ranked No. 2 by the WBC, and No. 5 by the WBO, WBA and IBF. While Arias is ranked No. 9 by the WBC, No. 6 by the IBF, No. 12 by the WBO and No. 14 by the WBA. In the amateurs he split with Philadelphia’s No. 1 WBO super middleweight Jesse Hart.
Did the Golovkin-Alvarez fight live up to the hype? Not in this writer’s opinion.
It takes “two to tango” and Alvarez wasn’t interested in obliging the harder hitting Golovkin. Where will the Golovkin-Alvarez II bout be held? Could it possibly at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn, NY? Let’s hope if they do fight again next it will not be in a state that allows a 49-0 former world champion fight a rank amateur MMA fighter who they should have never considered an official bout.