GGG v. Rolls Weigh-In Highlights
Photo by Stephanie Trapp – Showtime
HOUSTON, TX (September 17, 2018) – Former WBA super welterweight world champion Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara (25-3-2, 14 KOs), felt inspired by the state of boxing after watching last Saturday night’s main event between Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (38-1-1, 34 KOs) in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin fought an amazing fight, it was a true classic.” said Lara. “I want to congratulate both of them for putting together such a tremendous effort to bring the spotlight back on boxing. It would be a great honor to fight either fighter, and I would love to challenge myself against them.”
Erislandy Lara has been training in Houston, Texas for his next fight with trainer Ronnie Shields, as he is working hard in the gym, getting ready for his next fight date.
“I am ready to make a statement and to challenge either fighter at middleweight, whether it is Gennady Golovkin or Canelo Alvarez in a rematch…I am ready!”
Photo Credit- Tom Hogan/Golden Boy Promotions
It’s not often that a rematch outdoes the original, but on Saturday night from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, the 2018 version of Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (50-1-2 34 KO) v. Gennady Golovkin (38-1-1 34 KO) was far superior than its 2017 counterpart.
Arguably, you could credit Canelo’s sustained aggressiveness being the difference in 2018. In 2017, Alvarez fought well in many rounds but only for a small portion of the round, he did win some rounds in 2017 but the majority were clearly controlled by Golovkin. Standing-8 scored the 2017 fight 115-113 Golovkin.
Alvarez vowed to move forward and be more aggressive in the rematch promising a knockout, he accomplished all but the latter.
Alvarez moved forward from the opening bell and took the fight to Golovkin. Alvarez used some of the best head movement of his career in slipping many of Golovkin’s punches throughout the fight and his ring generalship and footwork were solid.
Although Golovkin’s jab was strong, Alvarez did something that had not been seen in a Golovkin fight with consistency, he backed up the former champion repeatedly onto his backfoot.
Alvarez also attacked the body early and often which visibly affected Golovkin and took a bit a steam out of his punches at times. Both fighters landed power shots throughout the fight and showed equally impenetrable beards. Both fighters were cut, Golovkin a slight cut over the right eye with an abrasion below it, no doubt a product of his adversary’s left hook, and the much more prominent laceration over the new champions left eye, a product of the Golovkin right.
Just when it seemed that Canelo was controlling Golovkin and beginning to brek him down, the former champion rallied late and controlled most of the final third of the fight, visibly stunning the new champion in the tenth.
Although Golovkin had the higher output, it was Canelo’s power and accuracy that most likely won him the swing rounds on the judges score cards.
Standing-8 scored Rounds 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9 for Canelo and Rounds 1, 4, 8, 10, 11, and 12 for Golovkin. Standing-8 final card, a draw, 6 rounds to 6, 114-114.
The official scorecards-
This epic battle between two top pound for pound fighters was fought at the highest of levels. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find one clinch in the fight, there simply was not one, or at least one that I remember. You never saw the referee, he wasn’t needed. Prizefighting at its best, the sweet science on full display.
Said Canelo after the fight, “I’m very excited Viva Mexico” a fitting comment on Mexican Independence Day.
“I looked for a knockout, but he’s a great fighter….He was connecting punches but they were few and far between…If the people want another fight, we’ll do it again”.
Golovkin left the ring and did not provide a post fight interview prior to the end of the telecast.
GGG Sleeping Well, Not Having Nightmares
Inside the wrapper of a recently purchased chocolate bar, Vanes Martirosyan (36-3-1 21 KO) found a golden ticket. The ticket represents the opportunity of a lifetime for Martirosyan as this Saturday night he faces Gennady Golovkin (37-0-1 33 KO). Filling in on less than a month’s notice for the recently suspended Canelo Alvarez, Martirosyan is considered to be the sacrificial lamb that ensures the coveted Cinco De Mayo date was filled. Most do not believe that the Armenian born California-based Martirosyan has a chance and for good reason.
For starters, although Martirosyan has decent pop, he’s not a huge puncher and you had better be able to keep Golovkin honest or at least give him something to think about. Secondly, he is trained by Edmond Tarverdyan of Rhonda Rousey/MMA fame and when Rousey fought Holly Holm, a highly skilled former boxing champion, it was Holm’s boxing that set the tone for the KO of Rousey. Tarverdyan’s tutelage of Rousey in the sweet science for the Holm fight was not good. The same for Rousey’s fight with Amanda Nunes. It was said that Tarverdyan had trained with her to box more in the Nunes fight but Rousey was stopped in the first and had no answer for Nunes’ boxing.
Lastly, it will be a few weeks short of two years since Martirosyan last fought. He is a professional and a gym rat so no doubt he will be ready to go but we should expect a certain amount of ring rust. In the past, Martirosyan has shown fatigue during the second half of fights which may not bode well for him here.
Martirosyan has never been stopped and has only been down a few times during fights, coming back to win both. Kassim Ouma was one of the Martirosyan opponents who dropped him, the same Ouma who gave Golovkin pockets of difficulty before he was stopped.
If there is a silver lining here it is that Martirosyan can box. He is one of the most complete boxers in the game and very underrated , layoff notwithstanding. He had competitive distance fights with Erislandy Lara one loss, one draw, Jermell Charlo UD loss which some thought was much closer, and a Demetrius Andrade SD loss. The kid can flat-out box and gives his opponents trouble at random times throughout the fight.
Again, it is his lack of firepower that will be the difference. Martirosyan has a warrior’s mentality and will engage but unless he catches Golovkin with something significant, he will be in deep. Golovkin is adept at cutting off the ring and uses his jab well which should at least negate some of the boxing that the challenger will utilize. Once Golovkin figures out the timing of the slick Martirosyan, he will begin to land his power to the body and head and begin to systematically break down the underdog.
One thing’s for sure, Saturday nights venue, The StubHub Center never disappoints. That said, it should be good while it lasts. Golovkin by 7th Round TKO.
Gender Equality-This First Lady Is P4P Royalty, Gender Be Damned
Undefeated Unified Welterweight Champion Cecilia Braekhus (32-0 9 KO) has made twenty-two consecutive title defenses since capturing her first title in 2009. Kind of Mayweather like in her approach, Braekhus uses her jab extremely well to set up straight rights and her movement is some of the best I’ve seen. Her opponent this Saturday night is Providence Rhode Island’s Kali Reis (13-6-1 4 KO). Reis, a former campion enters having won six of seven, her only loss to highly touted champion Christina Hammer by UD.
Braekhus, the Columbian born Norwegian has longed for a defining fight in the US, as all but one of her fights have been abroad. Although the fight against Reis is not career defining, we know we are very excited to see her on HBO as part of the Golovkin-Martirosyan card.
Kudos to HBO for following Showtime’s recent move to make an effort to air coverage of women’s boxing. Understood that both have done so in the past but let’s hope it is sustainable this time around.
Speaking of women’s boxing, here is a link to Standing-8’s featured piece from last year on the topic- https://standing-8.com/2017/03/27/million-dollar-ladies-the-resurgence-of-womens-boxing/
Gender Equality-Gender Be Damned P4P Part 2-
Ireland’s Katie Taylor (9-0) achieved her goal of being a unified champion with a UD (99-91 98-92 and 99-91) over Victoria Burgos (18-5). She now holds both the WBA and IBF lightweight world titles.
Taylor used excellent movement and combination punching to bank rounds early but changed directions and began to exchange more in the later rounds.
Taylor is highly skilled and it is beautiful to watch her work her craft. Arguably the fastest hands with a killer left hook. We have not seen the best Taylor yet and as her opposition increases we will be in for a show.
HBO and Showtime- get Taylor on a card soon. Thank you.
Brownsville In The Hous….Brooklyn In The House
Danny Jacobs (34-2 29 KO) defeated Maciej Sulecki (26-1 10 KO) by UD (117-110, 116-111 and 115-112) in a tough, tough fight. Sulecki had some moments but Jacobs was more effective throughout culminating with his knockdown of Sulecki in the final round.
Jacobs is a throwback fighter in his approach and style. Every time I watch him, I want to put the broadcast in black and white, don a “Press” derby, light a cigar and start banging away on a Smith Corona.
After the fight, Jacobs stated, ”If Brooklyn wants Charlo, then Charlo it will be”, more specifically Jermall of the #LionsOnly twin siblings.
That would make for one hell of a fight.
For The Love Of The Game
On Saturday night, WBO World Junior Featherweight champion Jesse Magdelano, (25-1 18KO, and mandatory/interim WBO champion Isaac Dogboe, (19-0 13 KO) showed us again why we love this game.
A tough fight with both warriors showing incredible heart throughout. Although Dogboe stopped Magdelano in the eleventh and we saw the title change hands, there were no losers.
True warriors giving it all for the love of the game.
Bye-Bye A-Side, Bye Bye B-Side
Bryant Jennings (23-2, 13 KOs) has had opportunities in his career only to underachieve when the lights are the brightest, most notably the Klitschko and Ortiz fights. If he ever wants to reach that level again, he has to dispatch lower tier opponents. Even though he beat Joey Dawejko (19-5-4, 11 KOs), by UD 98-92 X3, he was unspectacular in doing so considering the opponent. I know Dawejko is a tough dude, but I need to see heavies making statements.
Anwser..An Oxymoron Or Paradox Nickname??
Question- What is Big Baby?
Jarrell Miller (21-0-1, 18 KOs) beat Johann Duhaupas (37-5, 24 KOs) by UD in a WBA world heavyweight title eliminator on Saturday night. Duhaupas is a gatekeeper nobody likes to face but they do it because they have to. After doing so, you’ll know you were in a fight. That said, I won’t go all Jennings on Miller but he should have gotten Duhaupas out of there.
For all the big man skills Miller has, he is technically flawed and when the quality of his opponents increase, the likelihood of them being exposed does as well. I can’t help but think he would be tailor-made for the tall heavies with the long reach. A stiff jab followed by power would be trouble for him.
Yo Riverside….I Did It…
Josesito Lopez (36-7, 19 KOs) turned back the clock and had one of his best wins in sometime beating Miguel Cruz’ (17-1, 11 KOs) by UD.
Fighting for the first time a few weeks over a year with new trainer Robert Garcia, Lopez used a relentless attack with excellent combination punching and committed body work.
Lopez is always in exciting fights and this performance should garner some attention.
The May 5 rematch between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin is off. Alvarez withdrew himself amid his much publicized eating of contaminated meat resulting in a failed drug test.
“I am sad and feel powerless that this fight cannot happen now, I have nothing to hide. I want to be transparent in this process. I will do whatever I need to do to demonstrate I have never (deliberately) taken this substance.
I have always operated as a clean fighter. I have always taken clean substances. I respect the sport unconditionally and would never do anything to tarnish something I have worked so hard for and given so many sacrifices for.
“It saddens me that people are accusing me of doing something improper. From here on out, I will take increased precautions to ensure this will never happen again. I am ready for what comes in the future.”
The Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) has temporarily suspended Canelo Alvarez for testing positive for Clenbuterol during last month’s voluntary tests. As you may recall, Golden Boy Promotions released the following statement-
The NSAC will meet with Alvarez on April 10 to discuss the matter.
The timing of the suspension is more than a coincidence as earlier this week, Gennady Golovkin was very vocal about Alvarez. Golovkin made statements that he believes that Alvarez has been a user of PEDS and also that there is evidence that shows needle injection marks on Alvarez.
Said Golovkin this week-
“Again with the Mexican meat? This is Canelo, this is his team, this is his promotion, Canelo is cheating, using drugs, and everybody is jus trying to pretend it’s not happening, pretty obvious when Canelo’s muscle’s were all enlarged…traces of injections. I can talk about Oscar De La Hoya too, he is also not clean, he’s dirty”
The big rematch between Alvarez and Golovkin scheduled for May 5 is on for now but could be in serious jeopardy pending the outcome of the April 10th meeting.
This is boxing where the all mighty dollar is king so it is doubtful that the millions on the table would go away. That said, the boxing world is watching and awaiting the NSAC decision which could potentially have ripple effects for years.
More to come as this story continues to develop…..
The venue is now set… T-Mobile Arena Las Vegas..buckle up/knuckle up.. May 5 is coming.
Too Swift For His Own Good
Danny Garcia (31-1 19 KO) had his moments but it was not enough. Keith Thurman (28-0 22 KO) was just better. Thurman was masterful early using excellent movement while landing jabs, powerful combinations, and doing just enough body work to keep Garcia honest. The Garcia beard was as good as advertised. I still don’t know how he stayed on his feet with the early shot he took right off the chin that spun him around. As was stated, Thurman was masterful early. Thurman’s activity level greatly reduced in the second half of the fight. It appeared to me that he had hurt his right hand because he wasnt throwing it late as he was early, but that was not the case. Thurman simply stayed away and gave a few rounds away believing he had done enough to win. He was partly right but only because Garcia failed to cut off the ring with any regularity and while Garcia won rounds late, it wasnt enough.
Standing ovation for Tony Bellew (29-2-1 19 KO) for his mammoth victory over David Haye (28-3 26 KO). Granted, Haye fought injured from about the sixth round until the stoppage in the eleventh but such is sports. As we all know now, Haye tore his Achilles but really, before that happened Bellew was giving as good as he was getting. This was a good old-fashioned donnybrook with two warriors giving their all. While we praise Bellew for the victory, Mr. Haye deserves just as much credit if not more in defeat. When you tear an Achilles, you basically lose the use of the leg that sustained the injury. For Haye to have lasted almost five more rounds in a street brawl with that type of injury is nothing short of extraordinary.
Now Back To Our Regularly Scheduled Program…..
The resurgence of women’s boxing is amazing and will continue to grow. On Friday night, two-time Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields (2-0 1 KO) stopped a game Szilvia Szabados (15-9 6 KO) in the fourth in front of her hometown fans of Flint/Detroit Michigan. This fight was entertaining in that Shields was throwing bombs on an opponent with a granite chin, while also showing a good chin of her own. I know Shields was hyped up at home for the knockout but she will benefit from working behind the jab to set up her power. Shields made this fight much harder than it needed to be but we’ll chalk that up to her excitement in that she was headlining the first ever women’s main event on a premium network.
Hot Shots-Part Lemieux
David Lemieux (37-3 33 KO) landed a left hook on Curtis Stevens (29-6 21 KO) that is still sending shock waves through the middleweight division. We knew the Canadian can bang but that short hook was a thing of beauty. To be fair, there was a right hand that landed before the KO shot but the short distance + the textbook hook on the chin sweet spot was lethal. The bout was entertaining until the stoppage with both men landing huge power shots. Lemieux did some great body work in the first which was the difference in the round. The second a bit closer, then the KO of the Year shot that ended things in the third. It was a blessing that Stevens was ok.
Meet Me In The Trap, It’s Going Down, Meet Me In The Mall, It’s Going Down, Meet Me In The Club, It’s Going Down, Anywhere Ya Meet Me Guaranteed To Go Down
Ok, it’s really like…Meet Me In The T-Mobile Arena It’s Going Down, such is the carousel of the Floyd Mayweather v. Coner McGregor rumored fight. The latest rumour is a June 10 matchup. A quick check of the hotels showed a 5X increase on June 9 and 10 at most Strip hotels. See the State of The Game article for Standing-8’s thoughts on this money-making circus act.
Boxing’s March Madness, Well, Sort Of
Super stoked for the World Boxing Super Series. The brainchild of former GBP CEO Richard Schaefer, now heading Ringstar Sports, and prominent UK promoter Kalle Sauerland, this bracketed tournament by weight class has us intrigued. The winner of each tournament (weight class) will win the Muhammad Ali trophy. A newly designed award approved by the Ali family. For more information, see World Boxing Super Series press releases on main page.
Miracle on 33rd Street
This Saturday night, Danny Jacobs (32-1 29 KO) will get his shot at the title. Problem is, the titles are guarded by Gennady Golovkin (36-0 33 KO). Jacobs has a well chronicled story, a champion in the ring of life against one of the most feared assassins, cancer. He was told he would never fight again but here he is in with GGG for the right to wear the middleweight straps. Standing-8 has always thought that a stiff jab gives GGG problems, thing is, his opponents are so worried about what will be coming in return they deviate from the game plan. Jacobs is not known to have a great jab so there may be trouble already; however, another Standing-8 observation is that GGG can be exploited up through the middle. Throw a shot from the floor to the bottom of his chin and you will hit pay dirt. In Standing-8’s preview of the Kell Brook v. GGG bout, The Case For Kell Brook, we speculated that if Brook, who throws a great uppercut could land that punch, it may impact the fight. Brook did land the punch and we saw GGG truly rocked for a moment but again, worried about the return artillery, Brook was unable to sustain his plan. Jacobs throws a decent uppercut so again, there may be opportunities. That said, we have seen Jacobs rocked a few times in his career against lesser punchers which is not good. Jacobs has already defeated a foe more formidable than any opponent he will see in a ring, why not a miracle on 33rd street?
At times, boxing is a metaphor for life. When you get hit with a shot you don’t see coming, you either get up and fight or you are counted out.
Back in 2014, Kell Brook (36-0 25 KO) was involved in an unprovoked attack while on vacation in Spain and was slashed over his left thigh with a machete. Brook lost blood at an alarming rate as the fear of death hit his subconscious. The rest is a blur as he
woke up in a hospital bed recovering from hours of surgery that required a blood transfusion and the closing of a wound that would require over fifty stitches and staples.
At the time, the long term effects of the injury were unclear as well as if Brook would ever walk again, let alone fight.
“I don’t know how much blood I lost but I was told it was a lot,” Brook said. “I couldn’t understand much but I heard ‘critical’, it was so scary. I was panicking, “Will I fight again? Will I walk again?” The doctors couldn’t say, but they were so calm”
After the incident, Brook completed six months of grueling rehab, training, and was back in the ring. Champions are built from a different cloth and are “Special” (One/K) as you will.
When Saturday’s fight against Gennady Golovkin (35-0 32 KO) was announced, social media was abuzz negatively regarding Brook as GGG’s next opponent.
“He’s coming up a few weight classes?” “He’ll get murdered” “Why isn’t GGG fighting Canelo?” “Who’s Brek?” “Is that the guy who beat Porter?” Blah, blah, blah.
The man from Sheffield once dubbed “unbreakable” after his incredible resolve in the face of adversity stemming from the attack has more than a Rocky Balboa type of shot here.
We know what we’ll get from the man from Kazakhstan. Golovkin will move forward stalking Brook, look to cut off the ring, work the body, throw brutal combinations, wear his opponent down and go for the kill.
The general consensus is that Brook is in over his head jumping north from welter to middle and fighting the twenty-two straight knockout destroyer in his first fight. The visonaries see Brook being able to last several rounds but only until the inevitable happens, another Golovkin KO.
There has been so much talk about what GGG will do, the skillset of Brook seems to be an afterthought. Brook will present puzzles for Golovkin that will get him out of his comfort zone and challege him more than we have seen in some time.
In watching Golovkin fight after fight, a solid jab from his opponent seems to be the one thing that bothers him and his timing. Thing is, previous opponents were so scared of the artillery that they would get in return, they would lose focus and deviate from the game plan. It was kind of a fight within the fight and if you watched close enough, you could see it. In the end all that was remembered was the brutal KO that ended the fight.
Brook has an underated jab and combined with his speed, defense and ring I.Q., will present challanges for Golovkin. Brook is also very sneaky in throwing counter shots from the floor up through the middle. If there is one area that is open on Golovkin, it is the bottom of his chin.
Using distance and touching Golovkin with straight quick shots,Brook will continue to keep him off balance and honest.
In addition, Golovkin’s machismo “Mexican Style” has seen him offer his chin to his opponent and take a few shots just for the fun of it. He’d be wise not to employ this tactic with Brook. And, remember the Daniel Geale fight? Geale had actually landed a solid shot off of Golovkin’s forehead at the same time he was KO’d. Golovkin’s does have defensive and technical flaws at times and it will be Brook’s job to exploit them.
So much has been made of the weight jump and size but really Brook was a big welter and is pretty close in height and reach here. Additonally, Brook has been able to train and eat without losing excessive weight and has actually been the heavier fighter in sanctioned mandated weigh – ins. So, will it be an issue or non-issue? We’ll find out on Saturday.
The mind of a fighter is one of their best weapons. Outside of Brook’s skills, his focus and confidence are some of the strongest seen in the game and he truly believes he will win this fight.
Against an opponent like Golovkin there is no better mindset. Four years younger, more rounds of experience, and having been in close fights, could all come into play if the power of Golovkin is avoided.
2016 has already seen five world titles won by UK pugilists, Anthony Joshua, Tony Bellew, Lee Haskins, Ricky Burns, and Carl Frampton.
Why not Brook, why not now? If it happens, there will be a big drama show at the O2 in London.
This article contributed to BTG.