Will Canelo, GGG megafight be a KO?

The jury’s out on whether the pro­posed bout will at­tain leg­endary sta­tus

CityPress - - Sport - PULE MOKHINE pmokhine@city­press.co.za

The hype sur­round­ing the an­tic­i­pated megafight be­tween the world’s best mid­dleweights – Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez and Gen­nady “GGG” Golovkin – has set tongues wag­ging as to whether the box­ers will give fans a bout to re­mem­ber.

The pos­si­bil­ity of the two fight­ers ex­chang­ing blows gained mo­men­tum af­ter Mex­i­can Álvarez knocked out Bri­ton Amir Khan in the sixth round of the World Box­ing Coun­cil (WBC) ti­tle de­fence at T-Mo­bile Arena, Ne­vada last Sun­day.

As he knelt be­fore a fallen Khan, dazed from a dev­as­tat­ing punch, Álvarez mo­tioned for the USbased Kazakh Golovkin – who was sit­ting ring­side – to step in, say­ing: “I do not fear any­one. We do not come to play in this sport.”

Golovkin holds the In­ter­na­tional Box­ing Or­gan­i­sa­tion, World Box­ing As­so­ci­a­tion, WBC and In­ter­na­tional Box­ing Fed­er­a­tion di­adems.

The man nick­named “GGG” knocked out Do­minic Wade in the sec­ond round to send him sprawl­ing to the can­vas for the third time in less than six min­utes, and in so do­ing, pushed his own un­de­feated record to 35.

Now the WBC has or­dered Álvarez to stake his man­tle against Golovkin. The fight has been pen­cilled in for Septem­ber. The meet­ing be­tween the gla­di­a­tors has elicited such a flurry of pub­lic in­ter­est that it has been likened to the fa­mous world mid­dleweight ti­tle match be­tween Marvin “Mar­vel­lous” Hagler and Thomas “Tommy” Hearns that took place at Cae­sars Palace in Las Ve­gas in 1985.

So great was this scrap, dubbed “The War”, which saw Hagler win by a third-round tech­ni­cal knock­out, that it fea­tures in great box­ing ti­tle fight de­bates to this day.

A look at the two slug­gers’ records tips the scales in favour of Golovkin. Be­sides be­ing Álvarez’ se­nior by nine years, GGG is un­beaten in 35 fights, hav­ing reg­is­tered 32 wins by way of a short dis­tance.

This gives him a slight edge as he will also en­joy reach ad­van­tage.

But Álvarez, who is pro­moted by erst­while WBC light mid­dleweight cham­pion and great show­man Os­car De La Hoya, has seen more ring ac­tion than his ri­val (see graphic).

He has had 49 fights, win­ning 47 with one loss and a draw to his dis­ad­van­tage. And at 25, Al­varez’ age is on his side.

The qual­ity of the op­po­nents that these pugilists beat to be where they are now will count im­mensely when it comes to as­cer­tain­ing whether the megafight will en­thral fans – and earn the same sta­tus as last year’s world wel­ter­weight show­down be­tween Floyd “Money” May­weather and Manny “Pac­man” Pac­quiao that took place at the MGM Grand in Las Ve­gas.

That ex­cit­ing bout, won by May­weather on a unan­i­mous points de­ci­sion, was dubbed “the fight of the cen­tury” and grossed a record $600 mil­lion (R9.2 bil­lion).

I do not fear any­one. We do not come to play in this sport SAÚL ‘CANELO’ ÁLVAREZ


VIG­I­LANT Boxer Zolani Tete dis­plays his punch­ing power

Saúl ‘Canelo’ Álvarez vs Age Height Birth place Res­i­dence Reach Stance Record Gen­nady ‘GGG’ Golovkin

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