Canelo freezing GGG out, says he must wait until after he unifies 168-lb division
By Sean Jones: Canelo Alvarez says he knows that Gennadiy Golovkin is just waiting for a third fight against him before he retires, but he’s going to have to wait because the Mexican star plans on unifying the 168-pound division before considering a potential trilogy against the Kazakh fighter.
If Golovkin has to wait until Canelo unifies the 168lb division, it could mean a two-year wait. Golovkin is turning 39-years-old next April.
Alvarez’s immediate plans (53-1-2, 36 KOs) is to take on WBA Super World Super Middleweight champion Callum Smith (27-0, 19 KOs) this month on December 19th for his title.
Canelo, now promoting himself after splitting with Golden Boy Promotions recently, is headlining on DAZN against the unbeaten Smith at the Alamodome in Sant Antonio, Texas.
Alvarez views Smith, 29, as the #1 fighter in the super middleweight division, although some would argue that David Benavidez or Caleb Plant is the true #1 at 168.
Golovkin must wait for Canelo
Canelo isn’t saying who he plans on taking on next if he beats Callum on December 19th. Still, many boxing fans believe it’ll be WBO belt-holder Billy Joe Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs), who defeated Martin Murray by a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision lat Friday night on DAZN. Saunders looked mediocre in defeating the 38-year-old Murray, who he hand-picked as his opponent.
“Golovkin obviously you know that the only fight he wants, maybe to retire, is the fight with ‘Canelo,‘” said Alvarez to ESPN Deportes.
“Right now, the most important thing that we have in mind are other objectives, and the first is Callum Smith and, as Eddy [Reynoso] says, to unify the titles at 168 and continue making history,” Canelo continued. “We will see Golovkin later.”
IBF middleweight champion Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs) needs to focus on his career now, as it’s obvious from Canelo that he’s not going to fight him soon.
Golovkin, 38, is taking an easy title defense against Kamil Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KOs) this month on December 18th on DAZN from the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood, Florida.
If GGG wins that fight, he should seriously consider vacating his IBF 160-lb title and moving up to 168 to take on WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders, IBF champ Caleb Plant the eventual WBC belt holder. Right now, that title is vacant.
It’s not going to help Golovkin if he stays at 160, facing obscure opposition that boxing fans have zero interest in.
With Golovkin taking on Szeremeta this month rather than a talented fighter, the perception fans have is that GGG is taking it easy, milking his DAZN contract to make sure he doesn’t get beaten before his cash-out fight against Canelo.
GGG cannot afford to lose
It’s common knowledge that Golovkin cannot afford to lose if he wants to get his high-paying trilogy match against Canelo.
A loss for Golovkin at this point in his career would give Canelo the excuse that he needs to tell the boxing world that there’s no point in him facing him again.
It’s painfully obvious that Canelo wants no part of fighting Golovkin a third time after the huge problems he presented to him for their two fights.
Golovkin would likely have washed his hands of Canelo a long time ago if there wasn’t so much money in facing him a third time. That’s the fight that will Golovkin his biggest payday by far, which is obviously partly why he wants to fight him again.
Realistically, Golovkin will be 41 by the time Canelo faces him again, but that’s not a sure thing. Golovkin would need to win all of his fights for the next two years before Canelo looks in his direction, and that might not be possible for GGG.
Golovkin will not only need to keep winning for the next two to three years while for Canelo, but he’ll also need to look good in doing so.
In other words, the 2004 Olympic Silver medalist Golovkin can’t have any more controversial victories as we saw in his last fight against Sergiy Derevyancenko in October 2019.
It’s not a good sign that Golovkin is struggling to defeat fighters like Derevyanchenko.
Those types of performances from GGG would be the kiss of death for him getting a third match against Alvarez, as the boxing world would have no interest in seeing them fight again if Golovkin looks shot.
Alvarez wanted to close out 2020 with a big win
“We did not want to close this 2020 without fighting and because he is a great rival, the best at 168 pounds,” Canelo said of Callum Smith.
“He is a tall, strong rival, that motivates me a lot, and I want to close the year despite everything that happened in 2020. I want to close it with a flourish,’ said Alvarez.
Callum, 30, is a good fighter, but his stock has crashed since last year in November after his controversial 12 round unanimous decision win over John Ryder.
Smith, 6’3”, is no longer viewed as the same fighter that he was before the Ryder clash, and now fans view David Benavidez, Caleb Plant, and Edger Berlanga as the true class of the super middleweight division.
As long as Canelo is still fighting on DAZN, he’s free to fight guys like Callum Smith, Billy Joe Saunders, and Avni Yildirim.
Alvarez doesn’t need to worry about selling PPV fights
Canelo won’t need to worry about selling his fights on pay-per-view as long as he fights on DAZN, which means he can face fighters that wouldn’t normally sell on PPV in the U.S, like Saunders and Callum.
But when Canelo starts fighting on pay-per-view, it’s going to put his feet to the fire, making it essential that he faces dangerous guys like Golovkin, Artur Beterbiev, Dimitry Bivol, David Benavidez, and Caleb Plant.
Canelo has shown no interest in fighting Bivol, Beterbiev, Benavidez, and Plant, and for a good reason. There’s a good chance he’d lose to all of them.
Alvarez will need to face the harsh reality of what other fighters deal with if he stops fighting on DAZN, and he needs to sell his matches against non-popular fighters like Saunders on PPV.
Canelo wouldn’t be able to sell a mismatch against Saunders to the U.S boxing fans because they don’t know who Billy Joe is, and the ones that do know of him see him as a defensive-guy that is boring to watch.
The co-feature bout on Canelo-Smith on December 19th is WBC flyweight champion Julio Cesar Martinez (17-1, 13 KOs) defending against former IBF/WBO minimumweight champion Francisco ‘Chihuas’ Rodríguez (33-4-1, 24 KOs).
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