Canelo Alvarez is once again the man at Middleweight, and Gennady Golovkin is no longer undefeated. After a ridiculously close and well fought 12 rounds, Canelo emerged victorious via majority decision, 114-114, 115-113, 115-113.
Of course with any close fight like this the big talk afterwards is going to be the scoring. And look, I get it. Canelo has gotten very (VERY) favorable scorecards over the years. And I scored this 115-113 GGG myself. But to call this a robbery seems silly. Pacquiao vs. Bradley I is a robbery. This? This was a super close fight with probably 75% of the rounds being tough to call toss-ups. If some gave two more of those toss-ups to Canelo than I did? Well, that’s OK - it’s what happens in a close fight.
Instead of focus on the anger over the scores, let’s focus on the fight, because it really was a tremendous fight. Canelo came out aggressive and used very good body work throughout. GGG used the jab, and came on strong in the end. Both men had their strategies, and both gave it their all. It just favored Canelo in the eyes of the judges.
Will we see Canelo vs. GGG 3? It’s lilely, and Canelo himself said so post-fight. Golovkin did not, as he left the ring before being interviewed. The only potential impediment is that Golovkin is now 36 and winding down. Clearly there is no bigger money fight for him than a 3rd clash with Canelo, but he also has some decisions to make about what comes next.
Still, that’s all ahead of us. For now, let’s just revel in what a great fight we got, and try not to beat each other senseless over the scores, shall we?
Here’s a look at the rest of the card - the rare boxing PPV that was worth it from top to bottom:
- What an undercard. Three fights, three stoppages, less than 9 total rounds. Just terrifically violent.
- Jaime Munguia walked into the night with a lot of expectations. Seen as one of the top rising fighters right now, Munguia came in 4-0 in 2018, riding big wins over Sadam Ali and Liam Smith. Here, he earned win #5 of the year, extending his record to 31-0, looking great in the process. Brandon Cook just never stood a chance here, as Munguia overwhelmed him early, particularly when he managed to trap him in the corner. Munguia dropped him in the 3rd, and though Cook struggled back up to fight on, referee Tony Weeks wisely stepped in shortly after the knockdown to end it. There’s talk of Munguia moving up to Middleweight, which would be wise from a marketing standpoint - there are plenty of name fighter options for him there. At 21 years old, we don’t need to rush him in against GGG or Canelo, but he’s clearly on that path for now at least. We’ll see if he stays on it.
- David Lemieux is a beast. He absolutely nuked Spike O’Sullivan here, bombing him with a hard shot that dropped him and put him out before the first round was even over. Lemieux had the KO of the year in 2017 against Curtis Stevens, and he threw his hat in the ring for 2018 KO of the year here as well. I don’t see Lemieux being a serious world title challenger at Middleweight despite them trying to hype him up that way, but he’s a ton of fun every time and a must watch violence machine.
- Roman Chocolatito Gonzalez came into his fight with Moises Fuentes with a huge spotlight on him. The former pound for pound king of the world is on an 0-2 run, winless in two years, and looking like he just might be completely shot. He needed not just a win here, but a big win. And he got it... kind of. Gonzalez ended things spectacularly with a 5th round KO, and he dominated the fight, winning all rounds on my cards. He also showed some of that fire we saw from him at his peak. But at the same time, things still look off from what we know Gonzalez is capable of. Was it a good win? Absolutely. Does it make me think he is back and will be making a run at the top of the division? No.