Hyped fight ends in a draw

San Francisco Chronicle Late Edition - - SPORTS -

LAS VEGAS — Gen­nady Golovkin re­tained his mid­dleweight ti­tles Saturday night, fight­ing to a draw with Canelo Al­varez in a bru­tal bat­tle that ended with both fight­ers with their hands aloft in vic­tory.

The mid­dleweight show­down lived up to its hype as the two fight­ers traded huge punches and went af­ter each other for 12 rounds. Nei­ther fighter was down and nei­ther ap­peared se­ri­ously hurt, but both landed some huge punches to the head that had the crowd scream­ing in ex­cite­ment.

Golovkin was the ag­gres­sor through­out and landed punches that had put other fight­ers to the can­vas. But he couldn’t put Al­varez down, and the Mex­i­can star more than stood his own in ex­changes with Triple G, from Kaza­khstan. The two were still brawl­ing as the fi­nal sec­onds ticked down and the fight went to the score­cards.

One judge had Al­varez win­ning 118-110, a sec­ond had it 115-113 in Golovkin’s fa­vor while the third had it 114-114. The Associated Press scored it 114-114.

Golovkin, who has never lost in 38 fights, re­tained his mid­dleweight ti­tles with the draw. But Al­varez showed that he could not only take Golovkin’s punches but land telling punches of his own.

“Con­grat­u­la­tions all my friends from Mex­ico,” Golovkin said. “I want a true fight. I want a big drama show.”

There was plenty of drama late in the fight as Al­varez seemed to rally and rocked Golovkin with up­per­cuts and big right hands. But just as soon as he landed he of­ten took one back from the slug­ger so feared that most other fighter avoided him.

“I won seven-eight rounds eas­ily,” Al­varez said.

It was a bat­tle from the open­ing bell as Golovkin tried to walk Al­varez down but of­ten found him­self get­ting hit from sharp counter punches.

“Today, peo­ple give me draw. I fo­cus on box­ing,” Golovkin said. “Look my belts, I’m still cham­pion. I’ve not lost.”

Isaac Brekken / Associated Press

Canelo Al­varez (right) and Gen­nady Golovkin both lifted their arms in vic­tory at the end of the mid­dleweight show­down that ended in a con­tro­ver­sial draw. Golovkin has never lost a fight.

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