The Boxing world has been forcefully sucked into the black hole of the Floyd Mayweather-Conor McGregor fight for the better part of a year, with the media and casual fans unable to focus on anything beyond the circus which delivered record PPV buys. But Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez is boxing perfected. It’s the real fight that all combat fans have been looking for — two men as close to their prime as scheduling allows, fighting for supremacy of the boxing world. GGG is 37-0 with 33 knockouts. Alvarez is 49-1-1 with 34 knockouts. They seem allergic to boring fights, and refreshingly, unlike McGregor and Mayweather, they seem to avoid microphones like the strikes of their opponents.
This fight for the undisputed title of middleweight king, and quite possibly the title of the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world, and yet, there’s very little to be said. The never-ending highlight reels of both men do the talking, and if need be, Gennady or Canelo will give a few quiet remarks, then continue training. They embody a truth that knows that the only statement which truly matters is made with 10-ounce gloves in Las Vegas on September 16th.
Gennady Golovkin was brought from relative European obscurity in 2012 by signing with K2 promotions, who brought him under the wing of trainer Abel Sanchez who developed his Euro knockout style into an aggressive, pursuing, Mexican style. For Sanchez, this was how you marketed a fighter and put butts in the seats, not by making incendiary remarks and threatening to throw chairs at press conferences.
“It was very important that he understood that I’m a fan, so I want to develop something that I would be proud to showcase, but then would be happy to pay for it to be seen or to see it on TV,” Sanchez told Uproxx, aware of the difficulties the popularity of boxing has faced over the last few years. Boxing has been secondary to casual fight fans to the regularly-scheduled UFC events that seem to be on every weekend. It feels like boxing is asking a lot of casuals when it comes to keeping track of the various weight divisions, and fights that are meant to be showcased slaughters of lesser opponents. But there have also been quite a few classics in just the last calendar year.
“This year has been great for boxing,” Sanchez explained. “Joshua-Klitschko is probably one of the better fights we’ve seen in a long, long time.” But it still was a blip on the radar of US-based fight fans, even with one of the best heavyweights ever being taken off his throne.
“Andre Ward fought a rematch with Sergey Kovalev, two of probably the best fighters in the world, and they sell 5,500 tickets at Mandalay Bay and sell $125,000 in seats. That’s sad. That’s sad because they’re two of the best fighters in the world, but nobody wants to see them.” And yet GGG and Canelo have enraptured the combat sports zeitgeist as the fight. The purest that can be made. In a combat sports world that’s being marketed more and more like pro wrestling, GGG-Canelo is tracking to be a huge success. In large part, to the danger these two men present in the ring.