Fight News

Canelo vs. GGG III Set for September 17… But are the Fans?

It didn’t take long for Canelo Alvarez to decide on his next fight. The Mexican star revisits his rivalry with Gennady Golovkin as the two aim to settle the score in a September 17 rubber match.

Just three weeks ago, Alvarez was soundly beaten in his second light-heavyweight appearance by WBA-titlist Dmitry Bivol. After flirting with an immediate rematch, Alvarez will now return to super-middleweight to defend his undisputed titles against the biggest rival of his career.

“I feel very happy and proud to be able to give the best fights and this fight won’t be an exception,” said Canelo.

Their initial 2017 encounter produced a highly controversial draw. Alvarez managed to win a disputed majority decision in their 2019 rematch and Fight of the Year contender. An immediate third fight was discussed but fell apart after Canelo sued then promoter Golden Boy and had his contract with them and network-affiliate DAZN annulled.

Until now, Golovkin has doggedly pursued the third fight in hopes of retribution. He now receives it at 40 years old along with the opportunity to become undisputed in a new weight class.

“I hope to see you on September 17,” said Golovkin.

Matchroom CEo Eddie Hearn, who reportedly has Canelo under contract for two more fights, had previously stated a Golovkin trilogy and Bivol rematch are the two biggest fights in boxing. In choosing the trilogy, it was the clear animosity and history with Golovkin that won out.

“The Canelo vs. GGG trilogy is the biggest fight in boxing and I am delighted to get this made for September 17,” Hearn explained. “These are two men that bitterly dislike each other and want to end this incredible series with a blistering KO.
 
“I truly believe this will be the most thrilling fight between these two great champions and it will be fireworks from the first bell to the last man standing.”

Canelo vs. GGG III will air live on DAZ. At press time, a venue has not been announced.

***

I’d like to imagine there’s been a framed picture of the Canelo-GGG 3 contract sitting up in DAZN’s office for the last few years that said *Break glass in case of Canelo rebuilding fight.*

Canelo has always treated this fight as an afterthought, a payday in his back pocket when all other options fail… or aren’t favorable. Meanwhile, avenging that loss for Golovkin has been an Captain Ahab-Moby Dick-like obsession for the reigning middleweight champ. And he’s not without valid reasons — he signed with DAZN long-term with the promise of a third fight and for years never got it, missing out on a chance at a legacy-defining revenge win and his biggest fight on the platform.

However, the fight happening now feels hollow on several fronts. GGG is still formidable but shown clear signs of natural decline at 40 and has no history at super middleweight, a division that also has a stronger perceived threat in David Benavidez, who handily thrashed former Golovkin title opponent David Lemieux last weekend. Also, the tired “dared to be great” narrative takes a hit when an immediate Bivol rematch was there if Canelo wanted it (something he claimed right after the fight).

Canelo-GGG 3 was red-hot at the beginning of 2020. Now? The boxing landscape is entirely different. Golovkin’s coasted for the majority of his DAZN contract outside of Sergiy Derevyenchenko and Canelo’s coming off a bad loss. These next four months will be a test of DAZN and Matchroom’s promotional muscle AND creativity in the US market. There’s a lot of work ahead to build this rivalry back up to the levels it was at in 2017 and 2019.

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