Canelo Alvarez—Where Would a Victory Over Golovkin Place Him?

By Marc Livitz on July 23, 2017
Canelo Alvarez—Where Would a Victory Over Golovkin Place Him?
Signs are beginning to point to a great night of boxing in Las Vegas on September 16.

Aside from the Mayweather debacle, Canelo’s biggest challenge is set to take place in less than two months…

Many signs are beginning to point to a great night of boxing in Las Vegas on Saturday, September 16. For the purposes of this article, we’ll exclude the circumstantial evidence tied to an event set to take place a few weeks prior in the same city. Just as juries are at times instructed to ignore a statement or an attempt to sway them, we’ll do the same in regard to August 26. When boxing superstar Saul “Canelo” Alvarez finished a night of carnival games against Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. this past May, there were many among us who may have suspected some type of challenge to be thrown in his direction from a certain knockout artist who hails from a certain county in Central Asia.

As we know, Gennady Golovkin didn’t just step into the ring and drag his foot across the mat in order to draw a line. He got the light show, the music and a well scripted package to boot.

Potential “megafights,” as they are sometimes termed, don’t need to be put on slow roast anymore. There’s no marinate period needed. Social media in many ways has settled that argument. Maybe we should be happy that the showdown for middleweight glory only took one year to materialize. On one side, there’s an undefeated champion from Kazakhstan while on the opposite end, we have a one-loss star from Mexico. Speaking of Kazakhstan, history has taught us of its prominence which dates back well over a thousand years and its place with the legendary Silk Road of Asia. Trade of many kinds allowed regions to exchange goods, ideas and much more. However, with innovation there is often risk and of course, disease and warfare accompanied this progress.

Some have argued across the years that boxing is dead and if it is close to taking its last breath, then much of it can in fact be attributed to a Silk Road of its very own. Different styles of fighting across countless cultures were available for not only our entertainment as fans, but for the progression of the sport as well. Of course, inanimate representations of disease and forms of warmongering prohibited us from seeing many of the fights we really wanted to see take place. So, on to September 16 we’ll go.

Many agree that Canelo Alvarez took on Floyd Mayweather, Jr. far too soon. This was the case before the September 2013 contest and not just after it. Then just 23, the fighter from Jalisco state was taken around the block for the lion’s share of twelve rounds. Wisely, pundits didn’t hold the loss against Alvarez and this wasn’t just because the promotion made lots and lots of money. Canelo showed class in defeat and was back in the ring the following Spring. As we know, he’s not lost a fight since then and his next outing, which is of course against Golovkin should turn a pretty penny in its own right. “GGG” is as feared as they come in the sport. In his 37 bouts, 33 have ended early, yet his last outing alerted some to lean towards the opinion of cracks in the armor beginning to surface.

Last March, Danny Jacobs was seen as the rightful winner versus Golovkin in the eyes of more than just a few boxing scribes as well as fans. In any case, save for perhaps a knockout, we may have known that Jacobs was the customary trailer before a blockbuster movie. We don’t always like what the trailers show us, but we still have to sit through them in order to get to where we want to go. The “middle guy” or the last man standing in the way of a potential financial bonanza is often flicked aside. Just ask Felix Sturm.

At last, the question is put forth. If Canelo Alvarez decisively beats Gennady Golovkin, meaning there’s no talk of rematch, trilogies, etc., then where will he rank among the all-time greats from Mexico? A close bout either way means too much bread is on the table to walk away from it, but let’s assume for the sake of beer cooler talk that the redhead from Guadalajara pops Golovkin and scores a knockout or landslide decision win. We have to be able to peel away the layers of craziness attached to a superstar from Mexico. The land of the TriColor loves its boxeo and its futbol.

The Mexican National team has never won a major tournament in soccer, unless the meaningless Confederations Cup in 1999 and numerous regional trophies (The Gold Cup) are considered. They’ve never won a World Cup, which of course isn’t to suggest they’re not on the right track to getting close to it. A Jules Rimet trophy (as it was known prior to the seventies) is likely to go to Mexico long before the United States. It’s not easy. Regardless, the passion and fervor shown towards the team is almost unmatched in all the world. Boxing is often no different.

Julio Cesar Chavez, Sr., Ruben “El Puas” Olivares, Marco Antonio Barrera, Ricardo “Finito” Lopez, Juan Manuel “Dinamita” Marquez, Vincente Saldivar and Erik “El Terrible” Morales are but a few of the hallowed names we’ve grown to associate with Mexico and the Mexican style of fighting that so many endear.. Aside from the Mayweather debacle, Canelo’s biggest challenge is set to take place in less than two months. He’s opened training camp in San Diego to begin his preparation for the contest tagged as “Supremacy.” The bout itself sold out the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and closed circuit locations in Sin City will soon go on sale at $75 each, not including service charges, of course.

Where will Canelo Alvarez find himself in terms of the all-time greats of his homeland on the morning of Sunday, September 17? Does a win catapult him to the top five to ten, perhaps? We’ll have to wait and see. Come September 16, the proof will be in the pudding and the pudding will be on the table. This is why we watch and why we love it, for better or for worse.

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  1. Kid Blast 05:11pm, 07/24/2017

    Probably in the top 8 or 9 with an arrow pointing up.

    After Sanchez and Chavez, you have a number of legendary Mexican fighters like Zarate, Ricardo Lopez, Barrera, JMM, Saldivar, and Olivares.

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