Canelo Alvarez, Gennady Golovkin finally face off at heated weigh-in
LAS VEGAS — Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin stood across from one another in February at the lone press conference to promote their rematch.
Of course, the bout never happened. Canelo tested positive for the banned substance clenbuterol, and the matchup was scrapped. When it was reorganized for the fall, there was no initial news conference this time around as the sides instead opted for a less expensive option — a satellite media tour.
And even when the final presser took place Wednesday, the face off — a staple of boxing promotion dating back to the carnival days in the 1800s — was curiously absent. Perhaps the sides were looking to build drama, but the fighters finally came together at Friday’s weigh-in, and it was Canelo who charged at GGG, pressing his forehead against his foe’s before the camps separated the heated exchange.
Canelo weighed 159.4 pounds ahead of Saturday’s hotly anticipated RING middleweight championship fight at T-Mobile Arena, a rematch of their terrific fight that resulted in a controversial draw. Golovkin, the unified champion who is rated No. 1 by The Ring both at middleweight and on the pound-for-pound list, tipped the scales at 159.6 pounds ahead of the HBO Pay-Per-View main event.
Golovkin, 36, sported a noticeably more chiseled physique following what trainer Abel Sanchez termed a “more purposeful camp,” due to the vitriolic nature of the promotion.
“I saw he’s like a clown; he showed me,” said GGG, clearly unamused by Canelo’s antics during the face-off. “You’ll see real war. Not regular fight. Special war. I want knockout.”
T-Mobile Arena was packed to the rafters with fans who cheered and booed both fighters, many of them Mexican. There were few empty seats, and the buzz is real on the eve of the biggest fight of the year.
Alvarez, 28, is clearly leaner heading into the rematch, and he, too, appeared to be in excellent shape. Some detractors claim its a sign Alvarez doped for the first bout; Alvarez remains adamant the adverse finding was the result of contaminated meat consumed in Mexico. He credits his new look with a preference for more speed in return encounter.
“Look, I got excited seeing all the fans,” said Alvarez when discussing his charge at GGG. “I defeated the weight and now it’s time to defeat him on Saturday.”
The time for talk — and histrionics — is finally over.
HBO PPV undercard weights:
Jaime Munguia 154; Brandon Cook 153.2
David Lemieux 160; Spike O’Sullivan 159.2
Roman Gonzalez 114.8; Moises Fuentes 116
Mike Coppinger is the Senior Writer for RingTV.com. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeCoppinger