The Bloody Elbow staff has submitted its predictions for the Canelo Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) vs. Gennady Golovkin (38-0-1, 34 KOs) rematch, and just like last year, the majority of the staff is going with the Mexican superstar to beat the Kazakh knockout artist. No one is predicting a KO for either fighter, which isn’t surprising given the chins on these guys.
Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez
Mookie Alexander: It’s a story of adjustments first and foremost, and a story of whether or not Golovkin will look “old” in there. Sometimes it doesn’t happen gradually in sports. You just turn up one afternoon and perform to your age. Canelo is 28 and Golovkin is 36, and that matters. As for adjustments, Golovkin has felt Canelo’s power and perhaps that should embolden him to be more aggressive when he has Canelo backed up against the ropes, particularly to the body. He may still be concerned about eating countershots because Canelo is the faster fighter, but he has to find a way to wear Alvarez out sooner, because Canelo did find a second wind in the later rounds of their first fight.
Conversely, can Canelo’s footwork befuddle GGG and cause him to be more inaccurate when trying to pressure him? He might have the advantage as a precise counterpuncher, which can make up for the gap in overall power. That said, I believe Golovkin is a better strategist than given credit for, he’ll change things up and go to the body more often while working off his jab, and we may even see a knockdown. I don’t see a KO from either man as GGG has an iron chin and Canelo hasn’t been rocked since 2010, but I can very much see Golovkin getting a knockdown with one of those weird looping left hooks to the top of Canelo’s head. I’m hoping we get a real classic and no controversies this time around. Gennady Golovkin by unanimous decision.
Tim Burke: The consensus is that Triple G won the first fight. However, that “win” has seemed to grow in size over the last year - it’s almost like Canelo wasn’t competitive, and it wasn’t the very close fight that I had Golovkin edging out seven rounds to five. In the meantime, Golovkin is another year older (he’s 36 now), and the tune-up against Martirosyan was a payday, not a real fight. I have been a massive Canelo fan for many years now, and I actually think he can win a strong decision this time. He’ll change his strategy a bit, fight a bit more technical, and not try to answer right away when Golovkin lands a hard shot. Canelo Alvarez, 116-112 decision.
Connor Ruebusch: Rematches are all all about adjustments, but in this case, it’s not easy to see what those adjustments will be. The first time around, Canelo got off to a great start, which kept Golovkin from really cranking up the pressure until about the 4th or 5th round, but also forced him to take quite a few of the middle rounds off. Golovkin had the volume, Canelo had the memorable blows, and neither man was particularly easy to hit. When I really think about it, though, Alvarez could have taken a few of the closer middle rounds last time if only he had stayed on his jab, constantly giving the aggressive GGG something to run into. Alvarez is already the sharper thinker of the two, at least in the ring, and I have just a little more faith in his ability to adjust between fights than I do Golovkin’s. Canelo Alvarez by unanimous decision.
Staff picking GGG: Nick, Mookie
Staff picking Canelo: Stephie, Ram, Tim, Connor, Phil
Jaime Munguia vs. Brandon Cook
Mookie Alexander: Cook is a good fighter and a nice showcase opponent for Munguia, who may have a title fight, but is absolutely nowhere near the level of Jermell Charlo or Jarrett Hurd. He’s 21 years old and needs a lot of seasoning, especially defensively, before he’s ready for top-flight junior middleweights. As it stands, Munguia’s offensive firepower is absolutely lethal, especially with his commitment to body shots. Cook was pieced up by Kanat Islam in his lone loss, showing great toughness despite being overmatched. I suspect this is what will happen on Saturday. Jaime Munguia by KO, round 4.
Staff picking Munguia: Mookie, Stephie, Ram, Tim, Connor
Staff picking Cook:
David Lemieux vs. Spike O’Sullivan
Mookie Alexander: This should be fun. I’m sure the winner wants a title fight, and I’ll unequivocally say that neither one of them stands a chance against Canelo, GGG (whom Lemieux soundly lost to), or the winner of Daniel Jacobs-Sergey Derevyanchenko, or the winner of Billy Joe Saunders-Demetrius Andrade (Saunders schooled both Lemieux and O’Sullivan). As for this fight, I’d have picked Lemieux without hesitation a few years ago. The problem with Lemieux is that while he’s powerful, his footwork is bad and he’s prone to absolutely puzzling performances even in victory. He’s not quite a glass cannon, but I don’t think he’s gotten that much better from his upset loss to Marco Antonio Rubio many years back. O’Sullivan is a come forward, high-volume puncher who can very easily make Lemieux uncomfortable and tire him out. That said, O’Sullivan doesn’t hit as hard as Lemieux does, and his aggressiveness can be turned against him in the form of Lemieux planting him with a left hand a la the Curtis Stevens fight. On paper, Lemieux should win this, and I’m picking him to discourage Spike with his power… I’m just not very comfortable that he gets it done. David Lemieux by TKO, round 9.
Tim Burke: If you’re just a casual boxing fan, you need to watch a David Lemieux fight. Does he always win? No. Can he have off nights? Sure. But there are few guys in boxing that bring ferocity like he does. I am biased because I’m Canadian and he’s one of my favorite fighters, but I highly doubt you’ll be disappointed by this bout. David Lemieux via TKO, round 7
Connor Ruebusch: What is there to say about this one? O’Sullivan is a fun, aggressive fighter who never achieved the same success as Lemieux. Lemieux, for his part, has looked preeeetty rough, lately, though some of that has to do with fighting superior competition. I give O’Sullivan a decent chance, here, because Lemieux has struggled at times with just the barest hints of boxing skill. But there are still the #levels to consider, and I don’t see O’Sullivan avoiding that Lemieux left hook all night. David Lemieux by TKO, round 10.
Staff picking Lemieux: Mookie, Stephie, Ram, Tim, Connor
Staff picking O’Sullivan:
Roman Gonzalez vs. Moises Fuentes
Mookie Alexander: Fuentes was also a very good fighter in his prime -- not Chocolatito levels of good mind you, but a quality world champion nevertheless -- it’s just that he’s undersized against Gonzalez and also on a much steeper decline. If Chocolatito can’t dominate against Fuentes, then that’s worrisome. I just want to see the combination punches flowing again and the confidence back in his game after the Sor Rungvisai losses. Fuentes is a couple of fights removed from losing to a glorified journeyman in Ulises Lara, who is 20-16-2. I understand the potential for sadness, but I don’t think Chocolatito is that washed. Roman Gonzalez by TKO, round 7.
Staff picking Chocolatito: Mookie, Stephie, Ram, Tim, Connor
Staff picking Fuentes:
Who wins the Canelo vs. GGG rematch?
This poll is closed
Canelo by KO
GGG by KO
Canelo by decision
GGG by decision