Should Golovkin walk away from Canelo negotiations?
By Sean Jones: Gennady ‘GGG” Golovkin has been waiting patiently for Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez to sign the contract for their rematch on May 5. Positive news from Canelo’s promoter Eric Gomez was announced this week that the negotiations for the fight are nearly complete. However, a day later, Golden Boy Promotions boss Oscar De La Hoya said that the negotiations for the Canelo-GGG fight are not close to being done, and that’s up to Golovkin if he wants to agree to the May 5 rematch or not.
This message from De La Hoya seemed to suggest that Golovkin had to agree to the offer that was given to him by Golden Boy Promotions.
Sometimes it’s better for a fighter like Golovkin to move on when his opponent ‘s promoters are trying to get him to agree to a deal that’s not to his liking. If Golovkin isn’t satisfied with whatever offer that Golden Boy is giving him for the Canelo rematch, it would be wise for him to go in another direction. WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders has already put it out there that he’s willing to face Golovkin next if he can’t get the May 5 rematch with Canelo done. If Golovkin faces Saunders and takes his World Boxing Organization title, then he’ll have all 4 titles in the 160 lb. division.
Canelo and Golden Boy might be more willing to give Golovkin the deal that he’s looking for once he walks away from the negotiations and beats Saunders. The reality is the middleweight division is hostile territory for a short fighter like the 5’8” Canelo. He’s like a better version of David Lemieux, but with the same size limitations. Once Canelo has to mix it up with the bigger, stronger and rangier middleweights like Daniel Jacobs, Billy Joe Saunders and Jermall Charlo, he’s going to realize that he’s not suited for the division. Those guys are going to do exactly what Golovkin did last September against Canelo by staying on the outside and using their 6-inch reach advantage to jab him.
Canelo lucked out with the set of judges assigned to the Golovkin fight in being given a controversial 12 round draw. Canelo can’t count on judging like that to take place for the remainder of his career. Canelo could lose badly to Saunders, Charlo and Jacobs in fights that won’t bring him the same kind of money he can get fighting Golovkin. If Canelo loses to those guys, he might be unhappy that he didn’t give Golovkin what he was asking for in the negotiations for their May 5 fight.
At this point it’s uncertain whether there will be a rematch between Canelo and Golovkin. But if there is going to be a second fight on the 5th of May, it looks like it’s going to be on Canelo’s terms or else it’s not going to happen. There’s a lot of money at stake for the rematch. If Canelo and Golovkin walk away from the fight and get beaten by another fighter in the middleweight division, then that money they would have had for the Canelo-GGG rematch won’t be there anymore.
Canelo’s promoter Eric Gomez saying that there won’t be a rematch clause in the contract for the May 5 fight puts Golovkin in a really bad position. Golovkin is the IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion. For him not to have a rematch clause in the contract for a title defense against a non-mandatory challenger, it’s bad news. Normally there is a rematch clause for champions when making voluntary defenses of their titles, as it gives them a chance to get a rematch if they lose. It’s standard. But Golovkin has to agree to not having a rematch clause, then that means Canelo take off with his 160 lb. titles if he defeats him on May 5. That’s not good for Golovkin, because he won’t have a chance to win back his belts. It’s unclear why Gomez and Golden Boy don’t want to let Golovkin have a rematch clause in the contract. It seems strange. It’s not as if Canelo has someone he can fight that will bring him more money than a third fight against Golovkin. David Lemieux was seen as Canelo’s backup option for May 5 if Golovkin didn’t give in to the purse split that was offered to him by Golden Boy for rematch. Lemieux’s loss to WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders eliminated him from the equation as the backup plan. I don’t know who else there is for Canelo to fight if he doesn’t face Golovkin in a third fight.
You can say that Canelo is the one that needs the rematch more than Golovkin does. The scoring for their previous fight on September 16 last year was seen as poor by the boxing public. The judges scored it a 12 round draw. That’s not how the fans saw the fight. In a landslide, the fans thought Golovkin won. Canelo was booed after the fight by his own fans at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. That’s bad when you get booed by your own fans. One judge [Adelaide Byrd’ scoring it 10 rounds to 2 for Canelo, and another judge [Don Trella] scoring it 6 rounds to 6, they didn’t score the fans did. Canelo needs the GGG rematch because a lot of fans think he was given a gift in a fight that he should have lost. If Golden Boy fails to negotiate the rematch with Golovkin, then that hurts Canelo, because he won’t be able show the fans that he’s not someone that was given a gift raw.
If the rematch fails to happen, then boxing fans are going to think that Canelo was afraid to fight Golovkin again after being outworked by him last September. Canelo was basically in the survival mode against Golovkin from the 3rd round. Canelo was just running. When Canelo did try and make a fight of it in rounds 10, 11 and 12, he was only capable of fighting hard in the first minute of those rounds. The judges scored those rounds for Canelo, but it’s hard to say that he deserved more than 1 of those because he was exhausted after the first minute. Canelo looked like he needed a rest break after he would throw a handful of shots.