A Boxing Trilogy That Had To Be

Matchroom Boxing

Mention the word trilogy and the association with boxing, though, some of the third time ring encounters fail to live up to expectations. Yet, I can mention three fights with the late Arturo Gatti and Micky Ward and two that received Fight of the Year accolades.

I covered all three of those wars in a span of a year at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut, two at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City under the promotional banner of New Jersey based Main Events Boxing and televised with the innovator of HBO Boxing. Three fights in boxing annals that are always discussed and two fighters, Gatti and Ward, would eventually become good friends.

Gatti, the lightweight champion would eventually meet an untimely death and that was not attributed to the many punches he took to the head over the years, rather a murder that still remains in question.

But Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin are not friends as they head for their trilogy September 17 in Las Vegas at the T-Mobile Arena that will be televised and distributed on DAZN Pay-Per-View. Two fights ended with controversy for the middleweight titles. Alvarez winning a decision and the second with a draw that many say Golovkin won.

Regardless, there is animosity. Golovkin, the middleweight champion is moving up in weight and attempting to dethrone Alvarez, the face of boxing who holds all the titles as the undisputed super middleweight champion.

Basically, this is the vicious part of boxing and drama that unfolds. Since their last fight in September of 2018, Alvarez winning a majority decision at T-Mobile Arena, the first loss for Golovkin in 44 fights, there has been a demand to settle the score with a third fight.

But as is in boxing logistics, promoters and at what weight to be contested, the war of words went back-and-forth. In the meantime, Alvarez, the face of boxing, continued to fight three times a year. His legacy continued to build and reached a level in the modern era that is difficult to replicate which culminated moving up in weight to 168 and unifying the titles.

Another quest for a championship failed for Alvarez a few months ago. He challenged Dmitry Bivol for the WBA light heavyweight title and for the first time was outclassed, a unanimous decision loss to a technical fighter and second blemish in 59 fights.

So many asked, why not defend the 168 titles instead of building this legacy? Canelo Alvarez is not one to avoid taking a risk, though in boxing a chance is onc e in a lifetime, and Alvarez, like him or not, prior to the Bivol fight was considered the top pound-for-pound king.

So Golovkin sat on the sidelines as his adversary continued to wheel and deal, including Alvarez becoming the most lucrative pay-per-view fighter in the business. He signed deals with Showtime boxing and this recent two fight venture with Matchroom Boxing and DAZN, the Bivol title opportunity and upcoming trilogy with Golovkin.

It has nothing to do with jealousy or ego, though Alvarez and his kingdom appear to portray a fighter sitting on a throne. Golovkin (Triple G) wants to end this in a decisive fashion and the boxing trilogy has always been a route to take.

This trilogy needs no build up or hype. There will be a sellout in September and with the continued asking price of pay-per-view boxing, fans will buy into this because it has been a fight in demand the past few years to settle that score.

However, Alvarez, since Friday in Los Angeles, has not shown or displayed enthusiasm about going along with the two city two press conferences that culminated in another red carpet affair Monday afternoon in the Tribeca vicinity of New York City.

It’s personal for me,” Alvarez said again Monday regarding his animosity with Golovkin. “He always pretends to be a nice guy. Like in front of people. I don’t need these press conferences.”

Meanwhile, Golovkin, through a translator, listened and gave his point of view, though showing no signs of the bitter animosity. He said again “You will see the best Gennadiy Golovkin on September 17, whatever skills I have I am going to demonstrate.”

Nothing more from the two champions. A press tour that offered little to strategy as promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom continued to build this as the best fight of the year, then again what else can be said?

It was those two stare downs at the media hyped faceoffs, perhaps too long. No movements or handshakes from the two fighters and they left the podium until they meet again in September for another stare down at a final press conference and the all important weigh-in.

And no reason to offer a preliminary prediction here. This was a press tour that had no theatrics with exception of that stare down and faceoff. Alvarez returned to the podium and posed with his unified championship title belts.

Golovkin held his hands high and offered a thumbs up. You can only hope this becomes a long and anticipated trilogy as advertised. This won’t be Gatti and Ward again and we may never see that type of trilogy again.

But this is Canelo Alvarez, the face of boxing. And this is Gennadiy Golovkin who vows to settle the score and gets all the belts.

Rich Mancuso: Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso Sports With Rich ” and co-host Robert Rizzo live every Tuesday evening 10pm ET on SLG Network via YouTube also available on Spotify. Like, Comment, Subscribe: Rich Mancuso YouTube


About the Author

Rich Mancuso

Rich Mancuso is a regular contributor at NY Sports Day, covering countless New York Mets, Yankees, and MLB teams along with some of the greatest boxing matches over the years. He is an award winning sports journalist and previously worked for The Associated Press, New York Daily News, Gannett, and BoxingInsider.com, in a career that spans almost 40 years.

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