Golden Boy recently walked away from negotiations for a long-awaited rematch between Canelo Alvarez and unified middleweight world titleholder Gennady Golovkin, but the fight was probably not going to happen in September regardless.
Canelo has not fought since September 2017 when he fought Golovkin to a controversial split draw at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, in a bout that most ringside observers believed Golovkin had won.
From the beginning, it seemed unlikely that Golden Boy would allow Canelo to take on Golovkin on his first fight back after a long layoff. Moreover, Alvarez recently underwent arthroscopic knee surgery.
Canelo (49-1-2, 34 KO's) tested positive for trace amounts of the substance in random urine tests conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association on Feb. 17 and Feb. 20 in his hometown of Guadalajara, Mexico. As a result, he was suspended six months by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, and the rematch with Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KO's), which was initially set to go down on May 5 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, was canceled.
Both teams are at fault for this latest impediment, but unsurprisingly, they are blaming one another -- the usual for boxing.
According to Tom Loeffler, Golovkin's promoter, his fighter is done making concessions for Canelo, and wants more money.
“All Gennady came back with is that, ‘I just want a fair split, I want a 50-50 split. I’m the champion,’” Loeffler said to The Press Enterprise.
“We made a lot of concessions for the first fight, was a very low percentage for Gennady. We made a lot of concessions for the rematch after Gennady proved his value.
“But Canelo, for whatever reason, was insisting on still having a huge advantage. … It was 65-35 percent for the rematch and Gennady thinks that’s just not fair. Taking 35 percent as the champion is just not fair.”
If the rematch never happens, which is very well possible, Golovkin's team deserves just as much of the blame. Although Alvarez failed two drug tests and essentially wasted everyone's time, he is still the draw, and Loeffler's demand of 50-50 is just ill-advised.
Loeffler also added that Canelo gave former four-division world champion Miguel Cotto 55 percent of the money for their November 2015 bout, but that is a terrible example, and he knows better.
Cotto was the A-side and Alvarez was not. It is that simple. That is like saying Manny Pacquiao deserved a 50-50 split against Floyd Mayweather because Mayweather fought Arturo Gatti for less money.
Golovkin fought Canelo in the first fight with a 70-30 split, but Alvarez is willing to make a slight concession and offered as much as a 65-35 split, but it was not good enough for Loeffler.
"We’re moving on. I do believe [Golovkin is scared], because it’s been one excuse after another,” Golden Boy Promotions president Eric Gomez said. “With what they came back with [on Thursday], they clearly want to kill the fight.”
Even weeks before the May rematch was canceled, Gomez had accused Golovkin of being afraid of Alvarez, although the unbeaten Kazakh had previously gone on record saying that he was willing to fight Canelo despite his positive drug tests. To say either fighter is afraid of the other is ludicrous, and it seems to be a constant, stale talking point from Golden Boy that needs a little more originality.
While it is possible Loeffler can negotiate higher than a 65-35 split, it certainly will not be 50-50, but they can cut it close.
Golden Boy has already reached out to former middleweight titlist Daniel Jacobs, WBO beltholder Billy Joe Saunders, and Golden Boy-promoted middleweight contender Gary "Spike" O'Sullivan for a possible fight against Canelo.
For his first fight back, out of the aforementioned candidates, Alvarez will likely take a tune-up fight, which will likely be O'Sullivan.
Both Canelo and Golovkin will be hurt financially, but GGG will take the bigger hit. But, there's something he has that Alvarez does not.
Golovkin's place as the era's top middleweight is intact, while Canelo has yet to prove himself, and a rematch could be the first step to repairing his torn reputation. That is something Alvarez cannot fix with just money alone. So, who really wants the fight?