Will Canelo Alvarez’s Pride Come Before His Fall?

By Paul Magno on March 3, 2019
Will Canelo Alvarez’s Pride Come Before His Fall?
There’s a point where ego can become excessive and it fools you into feeling invincible.

A superhero is being crafted from his flawed, human self by those with a money interest in seeing him become the bankable, salable face of a network…

I don’t have a complicated relationship when it comes to WBC/WBA middleweight champ Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and how I cover his exploits. When he does stupid stuff, I blast him. When he does good stuff, I praise him. When someone does shady stuff on his behalf, I scream about it. When he’s being railroaded, I speak up for him. This should be the way all writers cover fighters, right?

What I never wavered on, however, is the size of the ego on the kid. It’s damn huge.

As early as 17, the red-headed, freckle-faced Mexican was talking publicly about his desire to be a legend in the sport and, specifically, a legend among Mexican fight fans. And when some high-profile boxing people blasted his quick and too-early rise to prominence, the young man could be seen seething at the doubt cast on his path to legend status.

And, for sure, a big ego is a prerequisite for accomplishing big things, especially in a sport like boxing where a fighter puts himself out there, alone, to live or die based on his own ability and execution. Nobody became successful at anything, including boxing, without a raging case of “look at me and what I can do!”

Alvarez, though, has seemed particularly ego-heavy throughout the years—and it’s something that pushed him, perhaps, to be a better fighter than his natural assets suggested he could become. Without that drive to be the legend he saw himself becoming, he most likely would not have worked as hard on certain nuances and tactics to match more naturally gifted athletes.

But, there’s a point where ego can become excessive and, rather than building you up, it fools you into feeling invincible.

Based on some of the nonsense floated out there in a Canelo Alvarez-Daniel Jacobs publicity week last week, he may be in danger of being sucked into his own inflated self-worth.

Amid WBC talk of making him a very special “franchise champion”—whatever that means—and having a special jade, gold, and silver Mayan belt ready for him to take when (if) he beats Jacobs, Alvarez spoke freely of his own awesomeness.

“I hope that all those people who criticize [me],” Alvarez told the Mexican media, “would see and proclaim that there should be more people like me, like Chicharito (Mexican soccer player, Javier Hernandez) or Lorena Ochoa (Mexican professional golfer) in the country so there could be many [positive] examples, people who lift up the country, because of all the bad in Mexico. [These] people should concern themselves and be supportive of having people like us.”

Okay.

Oddly enough, this ego stroking is coming after the worst six months of his career, just last year, when he tested positive twice for the banned substance clenbuterol, missed a Cinco de Mayo date with Gennady Golovkin, and had to humble himself before fans and media as promoter Oscar De La Hoya tried his best to do damage control.

A spirited performance in a subsequent September win over Golovkin wiped the clenbuterol slate clean—or at least clean enough to get him a 5-year, $365 million deal from subscription-based streaming service, DAZN—and now a superhero is being crafted from his flawed, human self by those with a money interest in seeing him become the bankable, salable face of a network.

On May 4, against IBF champ Jacobs—a real fighter who poses a real threat—there’s a chance that the Canelo business could come crashing down.

If the Mexican star enters the ring with a sense of ego-driven entitlement, to any degree, he will find himself humbled very quickly. And then his obsession with being a legend will take a back seat to simply staying afloat.

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  1. Koolz 06:25pm, 03/05/2019

    Speaking of Canelo I think the World is really waiting for the Big Official Announcement of Golovkin Return!  It will spoil the whole Canelo Railway.
    GGG Hype Train!!!!!!!!!!
    Can’t wait and see what happens next.  Canelo might have a tough time with Jacobs even if he wins and that might mean no other fight in 2019.

    so GGG vs Canelo in 2020!  Really everyone just cares about GGG.

    regardless of opinions all these three fights were pretty close.
    Jacobs vs Canelo
    GGG vs Canelo 1
    GGG vs Canelo 2
    and now we have jacobs vs Canelo.  Is that going to be a close fight?  Yep!

  2. Koolz 06:18pm, 03/05/2019

    I honestly think he looks like he is still suffering from the last GGG fight.

    I can’t see him losing to Jacobs though because in Jacobs last fight he wasn’t showing anything that is blowing away Canelo.  In fact Jacobs last fight should have been a draw.

  3. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 10:07am, 03/04/2019

    Canelo could be Mother Teresa and eventually IF he keeps winning, people will root for someone to knock him on his freckled arse. It is unfortunately just human nature to want to build someone up and then have just as much desire to tear them down. No one is that big in the first place, but oh well, haters abound.  Like Prince said, “In this life, you’re on your own.” Just be true thyself, yo.

  4. don from prov 09:20am, 03/04/2019

    “and it’s something that pushed him, perhaps, to be a better fighter than his natural assets suggested he could become. Without that drive to be the legend he saw himself becoming, he most likely would not have worked as hard on certain nuances and tactics to match more naturally gifted athletes.”


    Agreed.  And that discipline/drive is to be admired.  Yet for the 1,000th time I will say that Alvarez lacks the stamina that—given what else he does and doesn’t possess—would allow him to be a great fighter.  I am not blown away by Jacobs either.  It appears anyway that they are fairly well matched.

  5. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 08:46am, 03/04/2019

    Think back to when you were 17 years old for a minute or two. How many punks thought they were all that?  In my case I was probably too cautious, self deprecating, and full of self doubt which sometimes keeps one safe when they are young and “invincible.”  I remember during the 1976 Olympics, my 15 year old neighbor started boxing in his backyard and boasting he was going to become a boxer. That lasted all of a couple of months. Then there was the kid who I hung out with who was going to be the next Bruce Jenner. haha. Wonder what that guy thinks about Bruce/Caitlyn nowadays? Jacobs does pose a “real threat.” My money will be on Jacobs to send the Irish Mexican kid crashing back down to Earth.

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