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By Steve Kim Updated on February 14, 2022

No Wrong Choice for Canelo

After consolidating the super middleweight division last year, now Canelo Alvarez embarks on his 2022 campaign. A fighter of his stature basically gets to pick and choose his fights. For any boxer that earns a bout with the Mexican superstar, its akin to hitting the lottery.

For him, it's just another day at the office. 

According to ESPN's Mike Coppinger, Alvarez is on the verge of signing a two-fight pact with DAZN/Matchroom Sports that will see him face WBA light heavyweight titlist, Dmitry Bivol in May, and then his arch-nemesis, Gennadiy Golovkin, for the third time.

There is a vocal faction that will scream bloody murder that current WBC middleweight champion, Jermall Charlo -- who has some pending legal issues as reported by TMZ -- is being bypassed. 

https://www.tmz.com/2022/02/11/boxing-star-jermall-charlo-arrested-again-in-texas/

It says here that there are no wrong choices for Alvarez. Either decision will play him tens of millions, and he will be facing well-known fighters (or at the very least guys who are world champions) in high-profile events.

For those who aren't aboard with him facing Bivol and then 'GGG', ask yourself this question: what has your favorite fighter done in comparison the past few years?

To put into perspective how high of a standard that Canelo is kept to, he is the only boxers that can beat three undefeated belt-holders (Callum Smith, Billy Joe Saunders and Caleb Plant) in a span of 11 months -- and have people criticize him for it.

German Villasenor

Meanwhile just about every other boxer is facing a litany of soft optional defenses.

But lets take a look at who Canelo might be facing. Bivol is an undefeated, well-schooled boxer, who's recent efforts have failed to capture the fancy of the public. Quite frankly, he's more effective than entertaining. Yet he is still rated number two at 175 by Ring Magazine (behind unified champion, Artur Beterbiev). 

With his in-and-out style, which looks a lot like fencing with boxing gloves, provides a difficult style -- if not necessarily an explosive clash -- for Canelo, who will have to find a way to break down Bivol.

There there is Golovkin, who arguably has at least one victory over Canelo, and at one point was the most feared middleweight on the planet. But after losing a razor think majority decision to Canelo in their rematch in 2018, he has been lost in DAZN, as he has fought just three times since then. His last outing was in December of 2020 as he faced Kamil Szeremeta.

By the time early April rolls around, Golovkin will be 40. At this stage he is a bit of an unknown quantity as a fighter. The prevailing thought is that while Canelo is a boxer on top of his game, at the apex of his powers, Golovkin is on the descent. Yet, he is still ranked number one by Ring at middleweight. 

We really don't know what version of Golovkin exists until he takes on Ryoto Murata in the spring. Should he rampage Murata in Japan like GGGodzilla, then the anticipation for the third go-around will be rekindled. But if he should struggle, this bout will be looked upon as a ritual sacrifice. 

Just think about this, Canelo could be facing the second ranked light heavyweight, and the top ranked middleweight (who will face him at 168) and still get heat from it. While nobody else is facing nearly the caliber of opponents on a consistent basis. 

Yeah, you could say it's a double-standard.

It really shows he is the standard.

 

KING RY

Late last week Ryan Garcia announced that he would be parting ways with 2021 'Trainer of the Year' Eddy Reynoso, and would be hooking up with the respected Joe Goossen.

OK, so moving forward, I just have a few questions about this union. Will Goossen be working with Garcia at the Ten Goose Gym in Van Nuys, or at Fierce King? (Which sounds more like a boutique clothing store on Sunset Blvd than a boxing gym)

Putting that aside, this is an interesting mix. As most of you know, Garcia is big on mitt-work, and throwing fast, flashy combinations for social media. He trains to be quick and explosive.  But having been in the gym with Goossen many times, I've seen first hand that he is a trainer that is decidedly old-school in his approach. 'the Denim Dynamo' doesn't use the pads all that much.

His 'system' -- as he calls it, is one that relies on a lot of shadow-boxing, heavy-bag, double-end bag, and slip drills. He prides himself on having fighters who know how to turn over their punches correctly for maximum effect.  Goossen's regimen on non-sparring days will take up to two-and-a-half hours, as boxers will do up to 40 rounds of floor work. If he were a football coach, Goossen would be Vince Lombardi -- big on live tackling, contact, the blocking sled, and repetition. 

It's not for every fighter. But those who can withstand the grind, benefit from it. The question is just how compliant will Garcia be to the Goossen way of doing things?

 

EASY RYDER?

The best way to describe the John Ryder-Danny Jacobs bout on Saturday was that Ryder did enough to get a fortunate decision on home soil in England, while Jacobs didn't do enough to overcome being on the road.

The first half of the bout -- which was a snoozer -- was controlled by Jacobs. The second half saw Ryder rally, as he started to close the gap and let his hands go more liberally.  While he closed hard, you got the sense that he didn't do quite enough to overcome the early deficit.  

Matchroom Sports/Mark Robinson

After 12 rounds, two judges had Ryder up 115-113, with the other having Jacobs by the same score. 

TStreetControversy felt as though Jacobs did enough to have his hands raised in victory.

Danny Jacobs Lured To England To Be ROBBED 😐 - Jacobs vs Ryder Post Fight RECAP & REACTION

Regardless of the result, it's clear that Jacobs is a declining fighter. It was evident that his legs weren't completely underneath him in the later stages of this contest. He's had a productive and lucrative career (that saw him make millions versus Golovkin and then Alvarez) but it's clear that his best boxing is in the rear view mirror.

 

FINAL FLURRIES

Is the lightweight auction ever going to come to an end?....Felix Cash seems to have some issues with punch resistance....I'm told that bantamweight contender Azat Hovhannisyan will be on the March 19 card at the Galen Center on the campus of USC, where Vergil Ortiz Jr. headlines...On that same night at the Crypto.com Arena as Jermell Charlo and Brian Castano engage in their rematch, junior welterweight prospect, Elvis Rodriguez has been added to that card....I can be reached at k9kim@yahoo.com...

About Author
No Wrong Choice for Canelo
  • Hosted 'the Main Event' on KIEV 870, and then later XTRA AM1150 ( a three hour show devoted to boxing) from 1996 to 1999.
  • Joined one of the first boxing websites, 'House of Boxing' in 1999, and then later became one of the founders of Maxboxing, that started in 2001, till his departure in 2014.
  • From 2014 to 2018, he was the lead columnist for UCNlive.com.
  • Was a boxing reporter for ESPN.com from 2018 to 2020.
  • He has written for Ring Magazine, International Boxing Digest and Boxing News.
  • Is the co-host of 'the 3 Knockdown Rule' with Mario Lopez, which has become of the most popular boxing podcasts the past several years.
  • Steve has also served as an announcer and analyst for RingTV, Thompson Boxing, 360 Promotions and CBS Sports Network.