Andre Ward says Canelo broke GGG, there WON’T be trilogy fight
By Sean Jones: Andre Ward says Saul Canelo Alvarez “broke” Gennady Golovkin last Saturday in beating him in their rematch, and he doesn’t see there being a trilogy fight that takes place between them. Ward says Canelo will take his win over the bigger guy, celebrate with his two middleweight titles, and then move on to the next phase of his career without facing Golovkin again.
Ward thinks the Canelo vs. GGG fight is worthy of a third fight, but he doesn’t see it happening. Ward doesn’t spell it out for why Canelo won’t take the third fight, but it appears that he thinks that it would be hard on him physically to fight GGG in another grueling match. Ward might be correct about Canelo never facing Golovkin for a trilogy fight. Canelo is making a lot of money for his promoters. If he fights a motivated GGG in a third fight, he could wind up getting ground down and ending up like some fighters that fight grueling trilogies. Canelo might not be the same after last Saturday’s fight with GGG. If we put Canelo in with someone good like Jermall Chalro, he might be chopped up. Canelo’s promoter Oscar De La Hoya said this weekend that it would be silly to put his fighter back in with Golovkin in a third fight after two tough fights against him.
Canelo getting a decision was predictable, as it’s expected from him in all of his fights due his popularity. That’s what many boxing fans feel. It’s obviously bad for the sport when fans feel that one fighter is going to be given decisions no matter what happens.
What Ward doesn’t realize is that the boxing media had Golovkin either winning the Canelo fight or getting a draw. It doesn’t matter what Ward says. The media saw Golovkin not deserving of a loss, and the overall boxing world felt the same way. As such, Canelo was given another decision that the fans and media felt that he didn’t deserve. It’s bad for Canelo obviously because it makes him look like a pampered fighter who can’t be beaten when fighting in Las Vegas. In hindsight, it would have been better if Canelo and Golden Boy had agreed to fight Golovkin in New York where he wanted the rematch to take place, because putting it back in Las Vegas was akin to going back to the scene of a crime in the view of a lot of boxing fans of the sport.
“I think it was clear that the smaller guy backed up the bigger guy,” Andre Ward said to ESPN in raving about Canelo’s victory over GGG. “A puncher like Golovkin that makes his living by coming forward doesn’t want to go backwards. That was one of Canelo’s game plans from the beginning and you have to have the courage for standing in the lion’s den to get his work off.”
I personally scored the fight 117-111 in favor of Golovkin. GGG took over the fight in the second half of the fight and never looked back. Canelo was exhausted in the second part of the fight just like last time. When the steam came off of Canelo’s shots, he was tapping GGG and not doing anything with his punches. Golovkin was landing the much harder blows, and it didn’t matter that he wasn’t hitting Canelo was as many power shots. Golovkin’s shots were so much harder than Canelo, and they effortless. Golovkin was throwing punches with great form, and he didn’t need to load up on them the way that Canelo did. The fact that Canelo was given the decision didn’t surprise the boxing fans because they felt that Golovkin needed a knockout for him to win the fight because he was fighting the Mexican star in Las Vegas here he never loses.
Canelo, 28, almost had to stand and fight Golovkin this fight. I’m not sure that Canelo would have done it if not for his two positive tests for clenbuterol last February, and the controversial 12 round draw from his first fight against GGG last September at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Basiscally, the enire world saw Canelo losing to Golovkin and then being given a draw by the Nevada judges. The scores for that fight made no sense. One judge scores it 10 rounds to 2 in favor of Canelo, and another one turns in a 6-6 score after giving Alvarez the 7th round, which was viewed as easily the best round of the fight by GGG. Canelo’s two positive tests for the performance enhancing substance clenbuterol in February was the icing on the cake in making him into a pariah with many boxing fans. With all that going against Canelo, it’s really not surprising that he was willing to go after Golovkin last Saturday night and take the fight to him. What other choice did Canelo have? Unlike Goloivkin, Canelo’s boxing career was on the line in the rematch. If he didn’t turn in an impressive performance, he would have lost massive fans.
”Most of the moments in the fight, Canelo led,” Ward said. ”Golovkin would tap him with a jab and come back with a right hand, left hook and Canelo would finish. He would lead and he would finish,” Ward said about Canelo.
In watching the fight in slow motion, Canelo was hitting Golovkin’s gloves and air, and failing to land anything with force. The only shots that Canelo was connecting well with on occasion was his shots to the midsection of GGG, but those were few and far in between.
Ward isn’t pointing out that after Canelo would land a shot to “finish” as he says, Golovkin would come right back and nail him with a head-snapping jab and then tag him with a big right hand. Golovkin wasn’t taping Canelo with his jabs. GGG’s jabs were like power shots, and they did a lot of damage. Golovkin’s jabs have never been described as taps the way Ward is calling it. They’re power shots and they hurt. GGG was hitting he shorter-armed Canelo with jabs the entire night, dominating him from the outside. Teddy Atlas of ESPN, who had criticized GGG heavily before the rematch last Saturday, had him beating Canelo by a 117-111 score, which is the same score that I had it.
“As a judge looking at that…I’m looking at Canelo. He had the momentum,” Ward said. ”He was dominating. You can have a close fight, but you can still have a guy that’s dominating. It’s subtle but you had this guy that has the momentum. Canelo had this feeling. I’m not saying he was dominating, but the momentum of the fight [was controlled by Canelo],” Ward said.
Ward must have been watching a different fight than the one that took place last Saturday, because Canelo didn’t dominate Golovkin. What happened was Canelo got tired and then got repeatedly hurt by Golovkin in rounds 10 and 11. In the 12th, Golovkin was hitting Canelo with rockets and clearly getting the better of the action. If the judges had scored the 12th round for Golovkin, then the fight winds up as a draw.
”In essence, he broke Golovkin,” Ward said in giving his own spin on what took place last Saturday in the Canelo-GGG2 rematch.” He did the opposite [of running]. The smaller guy was doing something. If you really look at the fight, Canelo is dominating from the standpoint of staying in control. He didn’t back up the whole fight. That’s not really a characteristic of Canelo when he’s fighting a bigger guy like Golovkin,” Ward said.
Unfortunately, no one agrees with Ward in his opinion that Canelo “broke” Golovkin. When a fighter is broken, they’re not the ones that are taking the fight to a badly fatigued fighter in the championship rounds and repeatedly hurting him to the point where he needs to hold, as Golovkin was doing to Canelo. I think it’s safe to say that the only fighter that was getting dominated in the end was Canelo, who looked gassed out and lacking power to keep Golovkin off of him.
“If the first fight could have gone either way and it was scored a draw, then what do you think this fight should be scored because he was fighting better than this time than he did last time,” Ward said.
What Ward fails to say is the first Canelo-GGG fight wasn’t viewed as a fight that could go either way. It was seen as a fight that Golovkin deserved to win by 8 rounds to 4 in the view of a lot of people. Golovkin was seen as the CLEAR winner of the first fight with Canelo. That wasn’t a fight that was viewed as a draw. Golovkin looked like the much better fighter of the two, as Canelo spent most of the contest along the ropes, eating jabs, looking tired and running to his left. Ward is correct about Canelo fighting better in the rematch than he did in the first fight, but he still was seen as the loser by a legion of boxing fans and the media.
If you look at look at social media, the boxing fans are furious at the results of the second Canelo vs. GGG fight, as they think it was another robbery in Las Vegas. The first fight was seen as a robbery of Golovkin, and the second one was too. That’s the tragedy of the situation. Canelo was given a decision in both fights that the fans didn’t feel he deserved. That’s why it’s important that Canelo fight Golovkin in a third fight as soon as possible because if he doesn’t, then it’s going to be bad for him. Golovkin, 36, will be viewed as the people’s champion and Canelo the pampered fighter, who won because of politics and his large fan base rather than what he did inside the ring.
“I think this is worthy of a trilogy, but there won’t be a trilogy,” Ward said about the Canelo vs. Golovkin rivalry. “When you fight a dangerous guy like Golovkin and you’re a smaller guy like Canelo, when you fight those kinds of fights where you win by a couple of rounds, you take that and you take the check, and you take all the belts and go home and celebrate and you move on to the next phase,” Ward said.
If the excuse for Canelo not to take tough fights against big middleweights is that he’s a small guy, then he needs to drop back down to 154 or 147 where he won’t be as small for the weight class. If Ward thinks the 5’8” Canelo shouldn’t fight bigger guys like Golovkin a lot because he’s bigger, then the Mexican fighter needs to drain down and compete with guys that aren’t dwarfing him. The problem is if Canelo oves down to 154, he’s going to have a ton of pressure to fight the 6’1” Jarrett Hurd and the 6’0” Jermell Charlo. Those guys are bigger than GGG. Canelo won’t be able to avoid fighting Charlo and Hurd without being seen as ducking them if he moves back down to 154. Canelo obviously isn’t going to move back down to junior middleweight, because that would be a bad career move, as he would be seen as hiding from the bigger guys at middleweight after his controversial win over GGG.
Ward almost sounds like he’s speaking on Canelo’s behalf in giving his thoughts about why he feels there won’t – or shouldn’t – be a trilogy fight. I think it’s a bad look for Canelo if he ducks a third fight with Golovkin, because there’s no one else for him to fight that will generate the same amount of money and fan interest. If Ward is on board with Canelo fighting the likes of David Lemieux, Gary O’Sullivan, Demetrius Andrade, Billy Joe Saunders, Ryota Murata or Billy Joe Saunders, then he doesn’t realize that the fan interest is not going to be anywhere near the same as a third fight between Canelo and GGG. Those fighters aren’t big names in the United States, and they likely never will be. Canelo won’t make huge money fighting Andrade, Saunders, Murata, O’Sullivan, Jacobs or Lemieux. Those are fights that will be similar to Canelo’s fights against Liam Smith and Alfredo Angulo. There’s no interest from the boxing public in seeing Canelo fight hose guys. Jermall Charlo vs. Canelo would interest a lot of hardcore boxing fans, but Golden Boy Promotions likely won’t make that fight. The 6’0” Charlo would bring the same kind of grueling fight that Golovkin just brought to him.