Canelo vs. GGG Fight: Live Updates

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In their first bout in 2017, Gennadiy Golovkin did the same thing round after round: He walked forward and jabbed Saúl Álvarez’s face with his left fist. Golovkin threw nearly 200 more punches than Álvarez and landed 50 more, half of them jabs.

Álvarez is a fearsome counterpuncher, and many fighters are too afraid of his power to try and walk forward and take control of the bout. But GGG stalked Canelo, forcing him back into the ropes and risking the wrath.

Golovkin got hit, mind you. Especially in the early rounds, and with a few late flurries from Canelo. But the middle of the fight was dominated by Golovkin. Going into the 10th round, HBO’s cameras picked up Eddie Reynoso, Álvarez’s longtime trainer, telling him: “These are for your life. Three perfect rounds, son.”

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Of course, as memorable as the fight was, it is mostly remembered for what happened afterward. One judge scored the fight 115-113 in favor of Golovkin. Another scored it a 114-114 draw. The third judge, Adalaide Byrd, scored it 118-110 in favor of Álvarez. According to Byrd, Golovkin won just the fourth and seventh rounds.

Oscar de la Hoya, who was Álvarez’s promoter, defended Byrd as a competent judge. But even he said he scored the fight just 115-113 in favor of his fighter, Álvarez, and added: “A lot of people are not understanding 118-110, just like myself.”

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While the final result of the second bout — extremely close and difficult to score — was similar, the manner in which the second fight between Álvarez and Golovkin was contested was not. The mutual respect between the fighters gave way to animosity, as the bout was delayed after Álvarez tested positive for clenbuterol (he said it came from tainted meat) and Golovkin called him a drug cheat.

This time Álvarez was the aggressor, refusing to let Golovkin push him back, and instead the fight was contested in the middle of the ring. Golovkin still threw numerous jabs, but instead of simply advancing forward behind the punch, he stood and traded power punches with Álvarez much more than in their first fight. Consequently, both fighters were bloodied with deep cuts over their eyes.

Golovkin, the older man by eight years, looked like he was fading in the middle rounds, most of which were decisively won by Álvarez. But he laid down a furious flurry of punches in the 10th round and looked like the stronger fighter in the final few rounds.

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Golovkin managed to force a draw on one judge’s scorecard, but Canelo won the other two 115-113. This time there was no controversy, just a close fight that barely went Álvarez’s way.



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