By Sean Jones, first uploaded ob Boxing News 24.
Gennady “GGG” Golovkin’s trainer Abel Sanchez says he won’t be changing his normal high pressure fighting style for the Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs) fight this Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
They intend on sticking with what’s worked for Golovkin in the past just so they can adapt to Canelo’s style. Sanchez maintains that if Triple G were to change his fighting style for the fight against the Golden Boy star Canelo, it could keep him from being 100 percent for their fight on HBO PPV, as it would be playing into the Mexican star’s style. If the fight is played out at a slow pace like Canelo’s last match against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., then it works in his favor. Canelo does well in fights that are fought at a pace, because he gets plenty of rest breaks and he steals the rounds with his short bursts of combinations.
Sanchez doesn’t see Canelo’s weight gain as being something that can help him in this fight with GGG. Sanchez says Canelo will need to make the 160-lb. weigh-in limit on September 16, and then he’ll need to stay within 10 lbs. of that by making the 170-pound weigh-in limit mandated by the International Boxing Federation for the 9:00 A.M. weigh-in on the day of the fight this Saturday on September 16.
Sanchez thinks Canelo will fight for the IBF title, being that he said he wants to fight for the belt. But we saw in Golovkin’s last fight, Daniel Jacobs blew off the IBF’s same-day secondary weigh-in so that he could use the time to rehydrate more. As Sanchez says, Jacobs “gamed the system” by not weighing in the morning of the fight like Golovkin had to. The strategy still didn’t work for Jacobs, as he lost the fight by a 12 round unanimous decision, but it showed you how desperate he was to try and get an edge to beat GGG.
Given that Canelo is following the Jacobs’ playbook by gaining a ton of weight for the fight, it’s quite possible that he’ll choose not to be weighed in by the IBF as well on the morning of the fight. If so, that would be a second title that Canelo won’t be fighting for on Saturday. Canelo already said he won’t fight for Golovkin’s WBC belt. If Canelo decides not to weigh-in on Saturday, then he won’t be able to win the IBF belt if he defeats GGG. The only titles Canelo would capture with a victory is the IBO and WBA straps. Of course, I don’t think Canelo cares too much about the belts. I think he’s more focused on beating Golovkin at all costs.
I would be very surprised if Canelo weighs in on Saturday. Indeed, I don’t think he will. With all the weight that Canelo has packed on, he’s not going to be able to weigh in on Saturday without it hurting him. If his true weight before dehydrating is 185-190, it’s going to be too hard for him to keep his weight down to 170 after he makes the 160-lb. weigh-In limit on Friday, if he can. At this point, I wouldn’t be surprised if Canelo comes in 5 lbs. over the 160-lb. limit. Nothing surprises me when you’ve got a guy as desperate to win as Canelo.
“On 2:00 p.m. on the 15th of September, he’s going to have to weigh 160 pounds, regardless of how many muscles or how fat he is,” said Sanchez to Fighthype.com. “He’s going to have to weight 160. On 9:00 A.M. in the morning on September 16th, he’s going to have to weight 170. He’s said that he’s fighting for the IBF title. So he’ll have to weight 170 or less. So how much weight he puts on and how many muscles he has is really irrelevant. He still has to make the weight,” said Sanchez.
Sanchez sounds naïve. He really seems to think that Canelo will make an effort to keep his weight below 170 lbs. after he makes weight on Friday. I don’t see it happening. But if Canelo does decide to without fluids to make the 170-lb. same day weight check by the IBF, then it’s going to be hard for him to have the energy to beat Golovkin, especially if he rehydrates to 185 to 190. Only being able to gain 10 lbs. of water weight after making weight on Friday is going to be hellish for Canelo. That’s why it’s never a clever idea to weigh over 20 lbs. above your fighting weight for a fight.
At 185 to 190, Canelo should be fighting in the super middleweight division at 168. Dropping 20 to 22 lbs. of water weight to get down to 168 is less of a burden for a fighter that walks around a 185 to 190 for a fight, but it’s a nightmare for that fighter to get down to 160 to fight in the middleweight division. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. found success at middleweight for a brief amount of time with his ability to lose tremendous amounts of water weight to make the 160-lb. limit. Chavez Jr. would then rehydrate and come into his fights looking like a light heavyweight against his lighter opponents. I think Canelo following the Chavez Jr. strategy of bulking up massive amounts of weight and then dehydrating to make the 160-lb. limit. That’s why I see Canelo ignoring the IBF’s weight check on the morning of the fight this Saturday.
”He’s not going to be any stronger because of the weight,” said Sanchez. ”Timothy Bradley is a good example. Timothy Bradley has one of the best bodies in boxing. He can’t break an egg. Muscles don’t give you punching power. Muscles may give him more resistance to the punches that are coming at him, but he still has to come in at 160 or under 170 and face Golovkin,” said Sanchez.
From watching Canelo work out with his new muscles, it’s obvious that he’s not punching with more power. If anything, he might be weaker with the new muscle, because they seem to be slowing him up when he throws shots. The muscles that Canelo has put on are more for adornment than anything. Sanchez might be right about the muscle weight helping Canelo absorb punches a little bit better, but they’re obviously not going to help him take punches over the course of a 12-round fight.
If Golovkin keeps hitting Canelo often enough, it doesn’t matter how much muscle weight he’s packed on, he’s going to get knocked out. Muscles don’t help a fighter deal with a fast pace. Muscles are good for short fights that are over with before fatigue starts to set in. Canelo will be at his best in the first quarter of the fight, but if Golovkin is still around, he’s going to be trouble. This is a marathon, not a sprint. Poor Canelo seems to be counting on getting Golovkin out as fast as possible like he did against welterweight Amir Khan and James Kirkland. I think it was a mistake for Golden Boy to match Canelo against those weak fighters, because it now has him thinking he can knockout Golovkin in a similar fashion.
”We hope the judges they choose are on the up and up and everything is on a level playing field,” said Sanchez. ”I believe it will be. I believe he’s going to make it so it’s irrelevant for the judges for the outcome of the fight.”
The best thing Golovkin can do is to make sure the judges don’t play a factor in the fight. By knocking Canelo out, Golovkin won’t need to worry about the scoring of the judges. Golovkin would have been in trouble if he didn’t knock out Kell Brook last year. One judge had Brook ahead 3 rounds to 1, and the other two judges had the fight scored 2-2 after 4 rounds. Boxing News 24 had Golovkin ahead 3 rounds to going into the 5th round. Judges can score fights in strange ways, and it often seems to go against the visiting fighter.
”Golovkin is going to go out and fight him just like every fight you’ve seen,” said Sanchez. ”He’s going to go out and do what he does best. For me to say that Golovkin is going to go out and adapt to what Canelo does, we’d be going in not 100 percent. Then we’d be adapting to somebody else. I think Canelo is going to have a hard time dealing with the presence and strength and power. He’s going to have a difficult time. He may not be at the beginning of the fight, but eventually he’s going to have a very, very difficult time,” said Sanchez.
I agree with the strategy that Sanchez has for Golovkin to beat Canelo. Using pressure on Canelo is the best thing for Golovkin to do. It’s in keeping with Golovkin’s normal fighting style, and it forces Canelo to have to defend constantly for the full 3 minutes of every round. Canelo has never had to do that for a full 12 rounds, because his opposition has been largely being less than the best throughout his career. Canelo has never had to face a pressure fighter. He’s fought 3 good fighters during his career in Erislandy Lara, Austin Trout and Floyd Mayweather Jr. Some boxing fans would argue that Miguel Cotto is a good fighter, and he is a decent guy, but he’s not up there with the best at 154 like Jermell Charlo, Lara, Jarrett Hurd, Trout, Erickson Lubin and Demetrius Andrade. So, we’re talking about a fighter that has only fought 3 good fighters during his career in Canelo, and he’s never had to fight a pressure fighter before that wasn’t badly flawed. Canelo beat the pressure fighter Kirkland, but his punches resistance was nowhere. Canelo easily knocked him out, which wasn’t saying much because he’s already been knocked out in 1 round by Nubohiro Ishida.