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Does GGG need to KO Canelo to beat him in Mexico City?

Image: Does GGG need to KO Canelo to beat him in Mexico City?

By Sean Jones: Middleweight champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) has let it be known that he wants his May 5th rematch with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) to take place at the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City, Mexico.

By Golovkin choosing to fight Canelo in his home country of Mexico, it puts him potentially in the same situation as he would be if he were to agree to take the rematch in Las Vegas, Nevada. In other words, Golovkin would be fighting in a city where Canelo has fought many times in the past, and he’s got a huge fan base that will be turning out to see him live.

You have to realize that in boxing, it’s often very difficult for visiting fighters to win decisions win they travel to a popular fighter’s home country. Canelo has become arguably Mexico’s most popular fighter now that Juan Manuel Marquez has stepped away into retirement. Golovkin will be coming to Mexico t unseat a hero to many in Canelo Alvarez.

If you’re Golovkin, you have 2 choices in a fight with Canelo in Mexico City. Golovkin can box Canelo the way he did in the previous fight with Canelo or he can look to take the judges out of the equation entirely by knocking Canelo out. It didn’t work in Golovkin’s favor when he tried to boxing Canelo the way Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Erislandy Lara both did.

The judges didn’t give Golovkin the victory last time against Canelo, and you can assume that we’d be seeing the same thing in a rematch, especially with the fight taking place in Canelo’s home country. You know how it goes with judges. They’re said to be influenced unconsciously by crowd noise. They don’t set out to give a bad deal to the visiting fighters. When the judge’s start hearing crowd applause, it seems like they score the rounds in favor of the fighter that is getting cheered. If the Canelo-Gennady rematch is going to take place in Mexico City, you assume that the cheering from the boxing fans is going to be for Canelo rather than Golovkin.

If Golovkin does get his way in facing Canelo in Mexico City, it leaves open the question of whether he’ll need to knock him out for him to be given a victory. We saw last September that it wasn’t enough for Golovkin to outwork and out-land Canelo when the two fighters fought to a controversial 12 round draw on September 16 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

You would like to think that the judges would have their eyes open in the rematch and be willing to give the win to the best fighter of the two. That didn’t happen last time in the Canelo vs. GGG fight, and you have to assume that it might not happen in the rematch if the fight takes place in a venue that greatly favors Canelo.

Golovkin will need to come up with a different game plan for the Canelo rematch if he wants to get the ‘W’ against him. Golovkin found out the hard way that he’s not going to be able to beat Canelo by jabbing him for 12 rounds, and making him look helpless. Golovkin will need to get in the trenches and look to get dirty by trading power shots for as long as is necessary.

If Canelo gasses out, he’ll stop throwing counter punches and wind up taking a beating. I think Golovkin wasn’t aware that he could wear Canelo out by forcing a fast pace on him at close range. That’s how Golovkin will need to fight if he wants to beat Canelo. I don’t think the judges are going to give him a decision if he’s a visitor.

The Canelo vs. Golovkin rematch still hasn’t been made. Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffler said he would have to start looking elsewhere if the contract wasn’t completed with Canelo by early December. Well, we’re about to start December, and there’s no signs that the Canelo and GGG rematch is done. According to Oscar De La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions, they’re waiting on the David Lemieux vs. Billy Joe Saunders fight to take place on December 16. Golden Boy wants to look at all their options for Canelo.

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