One day short of a year this Saturday will be the rematch between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin that everyone involved in combat sports has wanted to see.
Before we dive deep into the second meeting, though, let us look back at that eventful September 16, 2017 night inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Which, fittingly enough, will also host the rematch.
Alvarez entered 49-1-1 with The Ring middleweight title and crown of lineal middleweight champion to his name. Golovkin, better known as GGG, was the unified WBA (super), WBC, IBF and IBO middleweight titleholder.
For 12 rounds of action, Alvarez and Golovkin went back-and-forth. The CompuBox stats showed just how evenly matched it was, as Alvarez landed 169 of the 505 punches he threw, with GGG hit on 218 of the 703 produced.
While Golovkin was the busier of the two fighters, it was Alvarez that landed at a slightly better percentage. Golovkin, though, did out-land him in 10 of the 12 rounds that night.
In the end, the bout would be ruled a draw, as one judge scored it 115-113 for GGG and the other saw it 114-114. The third, provided by Adalaide Byrd, was the odd-ball-out, as that was scored in favor of Alvarez, 118-110.
Golovkin told Max Kellerman after that “It was a big drama show. (The scoring) is not my fault. I put pressure on him every round. Look, I still have all the belts, I am still the champion.”
Alvarez, of course, recalled it differently, saying “I think I won eight rounds. I felt that I won the fight.”
The fight generated over $27 million at the gate with 17,318 fans buying tickets. Both numbers topped that of a fight between Floyd Mayweather and Alvarez, ranking it third on the all-time list for highest gates in boxing history. Alvarez made $5 million and GGG $3 million in guaranteed base purses.
Now, a rematch was originally booked for earlier this year, but Alvarez tested positive for a banned substance and was suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission. Alvarez and his team did renegotiate for the fight to happen once his suspension was cleared to compete again.
And so we are just days away from two of the best fighters in the world squaring off for a second time within 365 days. The bout will be contested for the WBA (super), WBC, IBO and The Ring middleweight titles, with the winner also walking out with the crown of best boxer in the world today added to his name plate.