Last night in Las Vegas, the bitter rivalry came to an end. Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin fought their third fight, and this time, in a fight that was totally different from fights one and two between these two so evenly matched ring warriors, there was a clear, no room for argument winner. Canelo Alvarez – who was lucky to have gotten a draw in the first Golovkin fight, with the decision in the Mexican’s favour in the rematch also being somewhat debatable – won in dominant fashion last night.
Yet once again, the judges just could not get it right. Canelo won, as he fully deserved to (GGG, showing class, has said as much) – yet it was dangerously close on two of the three cards, which had Canelo winning by just two points at 115-113; the third judge having it 116-112. Plenty of fans, pundits and fellow fighters had Canelo winning by a wider margin. 115-113 is just not on; if these two officials had awarded one more round to Golovkin, who came on strong in the final four rounds of the fight he knew he was losing, we would today be moaning and groaning about a second drawn fight between these two greats.
Thankfully, the right man won, so no real harm was done. Yet how many times have we heard that, or said that just lately? It seems bad scoring of a big fight, crazy scoring of a big fight, incompetent scoring of a big fight, call it what you want, is more and more frequent these days. And nobody seems to have any idea how to right this wrong.
Moving on, as Canelo and GGG will now do, the future looks as interesting as it is bright for Canelo; a fighter who felt, even after his loss to Dmirty Bivol, that he was still the pound-for-pound best in the sport. The return fight with Bivol is what Canelo will now shoot for – this after his left hand, damaged due to the rock-hardness of the chin it collided with last night, heals, and assuming Bivol comes through okay against Zurdo Ramirez on November 5, which is no sure thing at all.
Canelo has now won the Golovkin trilogy, and this may well go down as his defining career achievement. But at 32, Canelo wants more and he might be able to get it. That return with Bivol, if it happens, will be huge.
As for 40 year old Golovkin, he admitted he made a “tactical error” in starting last night’s fight “too slow,” but he is adamant he will not retire. “Absolutely [I plan to carry on boxing]. I have a great plan,” GGG said post-fight last night. “I have a lot of appointments. Remember, I’m still champion at 160, I come back guys.”
So it could be a drop back down to middleweight for Triple-G. Golovkin, though, like Canelo, is likely to be best remembered, years from now, for his three-fight rivalry with Canelo. A rivalry Canelo wins by a tally of 2-0-1.