Malignaggi: GGG respects Canelo’s left hook

By Boxing News - 02/16/2018 - Comments

Image: Malignaggi: GGG respects Canelo’s left hook

By Sean Jones: Paulie Malignaggi says IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) had too much respect for Saul Canelo Alvarez’s left hook in their fight last September, and this enabled the Golden Boy Promotions start to move on outside all night long to evade his pressure.

Malignaggi says for Golovkin to keep Canelo (49-1-2, 34 KOs) from being able to get away from him continually in their May 5th rematch, he’s going to need to step over to his right to cut the ring off. If Golovkin doesn’t step to the right to block Canelo, he’ll continue to his to his left all night long to keep from being pinned down and forced to fight. Canelo doesn’t want to stand and fight Golovkin for any length of time because he doesn’t possess the needed engine and pain threshold to battle him for a prolonged period of time. Canelo gets tired and has to move to get a breather.

Malignaggi says it’s very important for Golovkin to make sure he steps in to stop Canelo from going to his left otherwise he’ll use that same strategy in the rematch on HBO pay-per-view on the 5th of May. Canelo doesn’t move to the right. He never does that. It’s always to his left that he moves. It could be that Canelo is afraid of moving to his right and being wide open to Golovkin’s right hands.

“I think GGG won the first fight, but I think Canelo comported himself well,” Malignaggi said to Fighthub. “I don’t think you can make a case for Canelo winning the first fight unless you’re a Canelo fan or you thought he was going to win before the fight or you were hoping he would win and you were looking for any reason to give him a round. You got to actually win a round. You can’t just go look for one reason to give him a round. ‘Okay, I found it. I’m going to give it to him,’ because you’re going to find a reason. I think the 2nd fight will be fun,” Malignaggi said.

Malignaggi is right about Golovkin having clearly won the fight last September against Canelo. The only way you can give Canelo rounds around the first 2 is if you were looking for a reason to give him rounds. If not, then Golovkin swept rounds 3 through 12. He was landing the better shots, and Canelo was wasting his time running to his left to avoid pressure and not fighting. Is a weak performance by the 27-year-old Canelo, because he had boldly stated that he was going to prove to Golovkin that he had the real Mexican style. Canelo chose to use the Mayweather style and not stand and brawl with Golovkin like he’d been talking about. You can’t say Canelo outsmarted Golovkin by using movement, because he spoiled his chances of winning the fight by running from the Kazakhstan fighter. Golovkin was the 3 belt champion and Canelo just the challenger, who for some reason was allowed to keep his RING Magazine middleweight title after he vacated his WBC 160 lb. belt in 2016 and then didn’t fight in the weight class for almost a year and half. Canelo didn’t fight aggressively in the way he needed to for him to have a chance of beating Golovkin. Canelo fought like he was afraid of Golovkin.

“I think he’s got to stop the GGG momentum where he’s just comfortable walking guys down and guys let him get comfortable because he’s so strong,” Malignaggi said. “They don’t want to stop him from coming forward. They don’t want to get in his face and exchange with him too much, so they give up. They give ground. Before you know it, you’re giving up too much ground. I think that became the case for GGG and Canelo,” Malignaggi said.

The only way Canelo is going to stop Golovkin’s momentum in walking him down is if he stops running and actually fights him this time. Having seen Canelo fight dozens of times during his career, I don’t think he’s physically capable of exchanging punches with GGG for a prolonged period to stop him from coming forward. Canelo is a shoeshine type fighter, who only fights in brief spurts. That’s how Canelo fights and that’s the only he fights. The only time Canelo will stand in front of an opponent is when he has an opponent that is extremely slow or weak like Alfredo Angulo, Liam Smith, James Kirkland, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Amir Khan.

”The one thing you notice in his fights is GGG usually cuts the ring off very well. He was not cutting the ring off,” Malignaggi said. ”Canelo was able to circle the entire ring consistently. Why is that because GGG was respecting Canelo’s left hook. So he wasn’t really stepping over to his right, which was Canelo’s left to cut him off. Canelo always had that opportunity to work from one corner to the other, always to the left. GGG never allows you that luxury. Every other fighter he fights, he’s cutting them off so well. They have no choice but to fight and get in exchanges and GG is obviously hurting them more. But Golovkin had so much respect for Canelo’s left hook, he was allowing him to walk consistently backwards and giving him the exit each time continually to the left,” Malignaggi said.

Golovkin’s trainer Abel Sanchez should have given him instructions last September to cut Canelo off from moving to his left, because it was so obvious that he was using that same move the entire fight. You can give Sanchez a pass for not having Golovkin cut off Canelo for the first 2 rounds, but not for the entire 12 round fight. Sanchez should have had Golovkin make the necessary changes by round 3 or 4 to cut Canelo off. Canelo would need to change directions with his movement if he wants to keep from being cut off all night long. Frankly, the fight might not last more than a few rounds if Canelo can’t run from Golovkin to escape his pressure and get his badly needed rest breaks. Canelo has the stamina of an out of shape heavyweight. It’s unclear why Canelo has got such a bad engine. The only thing I know is Canelo has had stamina problems since he first turned pro in 2005, and it’s not something he can fix by riding a bike or jogging slowly. Canelo doesn’t know what he’s doing. This is a fixed problem that is permanent in my estimation. The only thing Canelo can do is be more imaginative with his running. He’s probably not going to be able to run to his left in the rematch on May 5th. If Canelo trains to run to his right, Golovkin will likely be ready for that too. The only thing Canelo can do then is clinching like crazy. That won’t help him though. To win the fight, Canelo has to throw punches, and he can’t and hold. If Canelo isn’t good enough to win, then his trainer Chepo Reynoso needs to throw in the towel or stop the fight in between rounds.

“To me, Golovkin still got off the better punches, and landed the better shots,” Malignaggi said. ”But it allowed Canelo to have that little escape to survive here and there and in the midst of him surviving, he was able to land some good shots as well and make the fight fun. I think Golovkin will bring the pressure, but I think Golovkin has to figure out a way to cut the ring off on Canelo a bit better to the fight without paying the price with Canelo’s left hook. I don’t know if that’s impossible, but maybe that’s how you approach that fight. Don’t step over to the right, which is Canelo’s left, because you don’t want to risk him throwing that shot. Either way, this is a chess match at such high levels,” Malignaggi said.

Golovkin can’t let Canelo slide to his left all night long, because he’ll be able to get his needed rest breaks that way and try and impress the judges. If all the judges see is Canelo using his hit and run fighting style, he might get the decision this time. Last time, Canelo was looking to land one or two shots, and then he was take off running to his left. When Golovkin would follow him, Canelo would try and counter him with a quick shot before taking off again. The only way Golovkin can keep Canelo from pulling that same trick in the rematch is to stop him from going to the left. Without the ability to run, Canelo will need to stand and have a dog fight this time, which is what the boxing public wants. They were hoping to see that last time, but Canelo wasn’t up to it mentally and physically.

Golovkin has to keep Canelo from ruining the fight for the boxing fans that are ordering it, because if he doesn’t cut off the ring in the rematch, he’ll keep moving to his left all night long.

”I still lean towards Golovkin,” Malignaggi said.I’d love to see Billy Joe Saunders in with either of them. I’d love to see Daniel Jacobs in with either.”

Canelo isn’t going to fight Billy Joe Saunders. That’s not happening. Golovkin is the guy that wants to fight Saunders, and that’s only because he holds the WBO middleweight title that he wants to add to his collection. If Golovkin didn’t care about the WBO strap, he’d go after a rematch with Daniel Jacobs or defend his WBC title against his mandatory Jermall Charlo. Those are far more exciting matches than a unification fight with Saunders, who is even more of a runner than Canelo.

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