PHILADELPHIA, PA (CBS) — This was supposed to be a modern-day Marvelous Marvin Hagler-Tommy Hearns war, and for moments, very fleeting, brief moments, it was.
Though overall, the Gennady “GGG” Golovkin-Saul “Canelo” Alvarez didn’t really do anything but add more confusion to a muddled boxing landscape.
After starting strong, Alvarez faded after the fourth and Golovkin was nowhere near as aggressive as he’s been in the past. Consequently, judge Dave Moretti scored the fight 115-113 in favor of Golovkin, Adalaide Byrd somehow, someway saw something far different than everyone else and had a ridiculous 118-110 score for Alvarez, and Don Trella scored the fight 114-114 (as did I).
Most respected ringside observers, however, felt GG won. According to CompuBox stats, Golovkin landed 218 of 703 shots (31 percent), while Alvarez landed 169 of 505 (34 percent). GGG did have an effective jab, connecting on 108-361 (30 percent) to Canelo’s 55-233 (24 percent). Golovkin landed more punches in 10 of the 12 rounds—mostly on the jab.
Alvarez outlanded GGG barely in the power department, 114-272 (42 percent) to GGG’s 110-342 (32 percent).
The decision left Golovkin with a 37-0-1 (33 KOs) record and all the major belts he arrived with, and Alvarez at 49-1-2 (34 KOs).
Byrd gave every round to Alvarez except the fourth and seventh. Alvarez did arguably more in the first five rounds, but GGG clearly dominated much of the second half of the fight. Alvarez leaned against the ropes and struggled, leaving GGG to probe and poke, sporadically opening up and nailing Canelo.
It is worthy of a rematch, sans the hype this one received. Hopefully the two camps can come together quickly and aim at a date in early 2018, rather than leave fans, already twisted over the outcome, with a prolonged wait again as they did for Saturday night to finally occur.
Golovkin said it best—though he was wrong, “This is terrible for the sport. It’s unbelievable.”
It’s boxing. Nothing is unbelievable.