So what did we witness on Saturday night? Early on in the fight, we saw Amir “King” Khan circling about the larger man, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, as if he were a bee hive. Then, every so often, gingerly at first, the circling Khan would dart in and out to deliver a one, two or even three punch combination. Did any of these punches hurt his opponent? Not really. It was not possible for the courageous Khan to match the cannon fodder of the larger, more powerful Alvarez.
Then, in the sixth round, as Khan began to slow down, he threw this rather lazy left hook at Canelo. Alvarez saw his opening and moved in for the kill, feinting with the left hand and then coming over the top with the accurate overhand right that landed flush on Khan’s chin. This singular, crushing blow sent Khan flying backward and on landing his head bounced up from the canvas. If you were sitting at ringside, you likely heard the glass shatter. The end came at the 2.37 mark of round six.
Then, amongst the gasps of concern, referee Kenny Bayless waved his arms three times above the head of the unconscious Khan. His signal indicated that immediate assistance was necessary and the emergency team appeared immediately to tend to the unconscientious fighter. At that point, Canelo showed his class and refrained from celebrating and opted to kneel down aside his fallen opponent. A cornerman then forlornly flapped his towel to offer some fresh air. Once Khan was revived, and sitting up, the excited Canelo returned briefly to the members of his team, then ran to the ropes to shout down at Golovkin and his trainer, Abel Sanchez, to issue his “Let’s get it on!” challenge.
Of course, Golovkin answered the overture because he’d like nothing better than to be the one and only undisputed Middleweight Champion of the World plus he would obviously enjoy one of the biggest paydays ever. “Let’s fight,” answered Golovkin. “Let’s go and see who forces who to back up. I want it to be a battle of wills and see what happens.” We finally had both of these gentlemen, Alvarez and Golovkin, talking their smack.
After all, why shouldn’t Golovkin talk smack? He now holds the IBF, WBA, and interim WBC belts and is an undefeated knockout artist who draws huge ratings on HBO plus he has a massive cult following. His frustration comes by way of his inability to coax boxing’s biggest names into the ring. Who wants to fight the recognized, toughest, pound for pound boxer in the sport?
“I invited him into the ring,” said Alvarez. “Like we say in Mexico, ‘We don’t [expletive] around.’ I don’t fear anyone. We don’t come to play in this sport. I fear no one in this sport.”
Then, don’t you just love the rehearsed but supposedly spontaneous quotes delivered by the promoters? “That was the most devastating knockout I have seen from Canelo,” said Oscar De La Hoya, chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. Yes, it was, but you have to take into consideration both the size difference and the fact that Khan has that glass jaw. “He may be a fast fighter,” said Canelo, “and I knew things would be complicated in the beginning, but I also knew things would eventually turn around in my favor as the fight progressed.”
The beaten Khan added a few choice words, “I want to thank everyone for coming (and spending a ton of dough to do so). I think it’s time for Canelo to step up to GGG (Gennady Golovkin), just like I stepped up to fight him. I tried as much as I could and trained very hard for this fight. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the result I wanted. Although I feel strong at this weight, I am naturally a lighter fighter and plan to go back down to welterweight. But, I like to challenge myself and that is why I took this fight. I want to be the best, and to be the best I have to fight the best.” Khan forgot to add, “Since I was fighting a bigger man, I virtually had nothing to lose and everything to gain. Sure, I had no chance of beating Canelo. So, I guess you can say I was only in it for the money.”
This is the reason why boxers have a manager so they can look out for their best interest. A good manager would not have allowed Khan, a welterweight, to fight a middleweight, a bigger and more powerful foe. Ninety-nine times out of a 100, the results are going to be the same. The bigger, younger, more powerful man of equal boxing ability is always going to beat the crap out of the smaller man. There was no doubt Khan was going to lose. The only thing in doubt was the round. The major concern was that he didn’t get hurt and didn’t get hurt real bad.
So, what happens next? The Golovkin people and Golden Boy Promotions will need to sit down and negotiate a reasonable deal. There’s no doubt Golovkin and his people want the fight and if Golden Boy Promotions doesn’t come to terms to make it happen, then the Golovkin side will most assuredly push the WBC to live up to their promise to strip Alvarez of the lineal WBC World Middleweight Title and hand it over to Golovkin.
At the post-fight news conference, De La Hoya tried to add some drama to the proceedings and began shouting as if Golovkin were still within earshot. “Golovkin, make sure you answer your phone tomorrow morning,” stated De La Hoya. “We will call you. We will call whoever deals for you.” For sure some philosopher somewhere has mentioned this type of drama. Something about real people usually avoiding this type of drama because they know their time is too valuable to waste. For sure De La Hoya and his people will need time to figure out the dollar amount of this possible “Fight of the Year.” If De La Hoya were to call on Sunday, what’s he going to say, “Happy Mother’s Day!” When you say things like that in the world of boxing, it’s just for the media. He’s just building up expectations.
Golden Boy Promotions must feel Canelo has gotten to the point where he is bigger than any belt, and with this current win, he has firmly established himself as the “A side.” In his current position, surely Canelo should be the one dictating the terms of this mega fight, the purse split, the weight limit and where this fight is to be held.