Canelo Alvarez

Staff Predictions | Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin

Photo by Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

On Saturday, September 16, 2017, Canelo Alvarez takes on Gennady Golovkin in a scheduled 12-round fight for the Middleweight championship of the world.

The long-awaited bout will take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada and will air live on HBO Pay-Per-View starting 8:00 pm, EST.

Read on for Round By Round Boxing‘s staff predictions for Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin and let us know you think will win.

Round By Round Boxing Staff Predictions - 2020

NameWinLossTotal FightsWin Percentage
Alex Burgos3360.5
Hans Themistode4260.66666666666667
R.L. Woodson4150.8
Robert Contreras6061

Canelo Alvarez
Gennady Golovkin

Photo by Marilyn Paulino/RBRBoxing

Liam Brady, Graphic Designer/Staff Writer

While the fight may not captivate as many viewers as Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor, several weeks ago, Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin is undoubtedly the flagship matchup in boxing.

After several months of deliberation, and finding it hard to pick a winner, I have eventually come to the conclusion that Golovkin will win this fight. As with previous superfights, there are so many variables that make Canelo-GGG compelling, which will no doubt result in conflicting opinions on who will succeed.

As for the narrative, I do not see an opening like Marvin Hagler vs. Thomas Hearns, which has been mentioned in the same breath as this fight. Instead, the fight will probably start from long range, with both fighters regularly throwing the jab and partaking in the customary “feeling out” process.

Canelo will most likely take the early rounds and land a lot more than Golovkin will, due to his speed and reflexes. Though it’s worth noting that Canelo’s power, in my opinion, can be overestimated at times. Therefore, I can’t see whatever he lands being effective in terms of pushing Golovkin back, or discouraging him from coming forward.

As a consequence, I think Golovkin will be patient and will stalk his opponent constantly while keeping a high guard, in tandem with throwing his solid jab. He may have to lose a few rounds in the process, but I feel he will wait for Canelo to expend a lot of energy in the early rounds, which usually results in him taking a breather against the ropes.

As evidenced in previous fights, such as Canelo vs. James Kirkland and Canelo vs. Liam Smith, Canelo has shown a tendency to throw an abundance of punches, only to dwindle and seek some respite against the ropes. This is where Golovkin will have most of his success, in my opinion, with his opponent against the ropes and open to sickening body shots and uppercuts.

Granted, Canelo will succeed in landing shots, but the inability to hurt his opponent will be exhausting, both mentally and physically. Much harder punchers have hit Golovkin clean, and not once did he seem unsettled. And with the constant pressure of Golovkin, combined with his ability to cut off the ring, it will be a taxing experience that could force Canelo to eventually retreat towards the ropes, which is a situation that Golovkin loves to place his opponent in.

Pushing Canelo towards the ropes will be crucial for Golovkin in winning the fight, as it will allow him to negate Canelo’s strengths, while using his size advantage to maraud and overwhelm his opponent with damaging shots to the body and head.

Golovkin’s recent fights may have made him look more human, which dilutes his fearsome aura in the ring, but I still believe he has enough in the tank, physically and technically, to pin Canelo down and make him wilt in the middle rounds. I’m picking Golovkin by TKO in the sixth or seventh round.

Prediction: Golovkin


Brandon Glass, Staff Writer

It’s been a long time coming, but finally two of the biggest names in the sport are finally going to exchange leather for our enjoyment. While I never was a huge Canelo Alvarez fan, I have to say he’s definitely earned my respect as a prizefighter and a star in the sport.

I, like the rest of the boxing world, have revered Golovkin for the monster he appeard to be – although his last outing with Danny Jacobs may have fractured his perceived invincibility. While Gennady Golovkin stylistically plays into Canelo’s best tactics in the ring, I still think there is a big question about Canelo’s chin.

I know. I know. I’ve mentioned it before about how Miguel Cotto’s older brother had Canelo out on his feet in the first round of his American debut (which he survived and eventually won by KO), but since Canelo has matured and grown as fighter.

He’s faced fighters, who on paper had the potential to test him in these ways, but they’ve all failed to really challenge Canelo in a way that defines fighters. Think Diego Corrales’s fight with Jose Luis Castillo, or Sugar Ray Leonard’s fight with Tommy Hearns. Conversely, the knock on Golovkin is that his resume is not erected on continual wins over countless future Hall of Famers.

Ironically, he needs the same thing Canelo does. Even though his power and skill have gotten him far, he still doesn’t have the drawing power that you would expect of a fighter with his mythology.

Bottom line: I think Golovkin wins by KO. I think it will be a difficult test for both fighters, with great exchanges and action packed moments,  but I think Golovkin has the amount of skill and power to land the kind of punch that will answer the aforementioned question. I just wonder how Canelo will respond. If he survives and gives a spirited effort his fans will love him for it, win or lose.

Prediction: Golovkin


R.L. Woodson, Staff Writer

There’s isn’t a comparable mega-matchup in boxing to be made over the next two-three years–maybe even five-plus years. Canelo Albvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin pits a pair of great fighters together for which I have no, or very little, reason to doubt or dislike.

Alvarez is a beautiful boxer who possesses prodigious combination punching ability. He exemplifies a fighter that loves boxing, and his skills are indicative of a boxer who dedicated himself to the profession around 15 years old. However, Alvarez’s tale-of-the-tape details just aren’t suited for dominance at Middleweight and above.

In order to feel better about his chances I would’ve had to have seen Canelo fight at least two of the longer, younger lions at 154-pounds. Whether it was a sanctioning body/premium network issue, or the standard “he doesn’t bring any money to the table” defense, I needed to see Canelo against two of Demetrius Andrade, either Charlo brother, and while he’s newer to the champion ranks Jarrett Hurd.

Golovkin’s chosen to operate in the same often depleted middleweight waters that Hall of Famer Bernard Hopkins reigned over for 10-plus years, 20 consecutive title defenses. Shout to Antwun Echols, no shade to Robert Allen. Golovkin’s criminal offense: Why didn’t he make the fight happen with Andre Ward?

All that aside, while middleweight contenders Daniel Jacobs (a former world champion), David Lemieux, Martin Murray and Curtis Stevens don’t all possess Alvarez’s complete skill set; each fighter possessed at least one equivalent or better skill, attribute and/or ability than Alvarez.

One narrative that developed during fight week is that Golovkin held back in some recent fights to secure this dream fight with Alvarez. No time to fully delve into the plausibility of such a long game.

I like Golovkin to use his excellent jab to probe Alvarez’s counter punching, and attempt to maintain a range that stifles Alvarez’s body work for as long as possible. Alvarez always looks to give the fans the action they want, so Rounds 2-5 will feature some great exchanges, but in Rounds 6 and 7 I expect Golovkin’s power and pressure to start degrading Alvarez’s effectiveness.

A bulked up Alvarez, who’ll need to avoid any stretches on the ropes, will be dealing with the extra mass while also being hit by the most lethal puncher he’s faced. The final 1/3 of the fight the question becomes: Does Golovkin author his greatest ‘drama show’ in his career’s biggest, and possibly final, HBO Pay-Per-View moment? Putting away Alvarez could be the most career-defining achievement for Golovkin. But, would a KO kill a lucrative rematch?

Give me Golovkin by late stoppage or a decision–which could likely get intriguing. This is boxing!

Prediction: Golovkin


Mike Burnell, Staff Writer

This Saturday the moment countless of boxing fans worldwide have awaited finally arrives as Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin “GGG” Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs) dips between the ropes to defend his belts against young lion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs).

Prognosticators of this mega-fight seem to be as polarized on each side as the last election and supremely confident in their choice of the victor.

Both fighters appear to be in optimum physical condition leading up to the fight and the gravity of this clash isn’t lost on either, rather it seems to be fueling them.

Considering the combatants at their best and worst in past contests it is easy to see the melee play out in many different ways with various results.

Expect to see the bout to be more cerebral than slugfest for the first four or five rounds with GGG stalking his Mexican rival while Canelo boxes and counters sharply.

The rounds will be closely contested when in the middle rounds GGG launches a Kazakh missile that finds its mark and has Alvarez in more trouble than a relationship on Jerry Springer.

Alvarez will hold, counter and fight back bravely until his head clears then launch in to an offensive of his own.
Both fighters will show signs of fatigue as early as round seven as a result of the pace and punishment that has been absorbed.

From this point forward the fight becomes one of attrition with each round in momentum that has the rabid crowd on their feet and appreciative to be in the arena when the final bell sounds.

Though the fight largely lives up to its billing the decision will do nothing to unite fans of either fighter when Alvarez is announced the winner by split decision. Some will cry robbery while others will insist that it was a close but clear victory for Canelo.

Cue rematch negotiations…

Prediction: Canelo


CJ Halloran, Staff Writer

Ah, the big fight. We’ve been waiting for this for nearly two years and it looks like it will be worth the wait. That being said, both fighters bring such different skill sets to the game that it’s hard to think what will happen.

The matchup reminds me of the Canelo Alvarez vs. Amir Khan fight, except Canelo is the faster fighter now. That being said, Gennady Golovkin can lock down the ring like I’ve only seen Mike Tyson do, and there’s only so many ways to avoid body punches, so, if he can start strong to the body and head, I have Golovkin by the seventh or eighth.

Prediction: Golovkin


Amber Williams, Photographer

Prediction: Canelo


Andrew Kang, Staff Writer

The biggest and best superfight that can be made is finally here! This has the makings of a true classic and their styles almost guarantee an exciting match.

Two years ago, I would say the fight is a bit of a mismatch with Gennady Golovkin being too strong for Canelo Alvarez. But Canelo is a better boxer now and at his peak, while Gennady is slower and older. GGG’s best chance is to jump on Canelo early, smoother him and bombard him with vicious body shots, throwing caution to the wind.

If he gives Alvarez too much room and respect as he did with Daniel Jacobs, he will fall right into Canelo’s strength and get peppered with quick and powerful counter shots.

If the usually durable Canelo can weather the early storm, I think he will outwork Gennady and avoid trouble in the late rounds after building a sizable lead, utilizing a surprisingly scientific game plan to outland GGG without getting hit as much in return.

I like the younger, fresher Canelo to win by late-round stoppage or close decision and pull off a mild upset.

Prediction: Canelo


Julio Sanchez, Photographer

Prediction: Canelo


Ty Paul, Staff Writer

Finally. After a long summer in which we had to endure preposterous hoopla for a clown show, we get what we’ve been waiting for. A true mega-fight, in this day in age. Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez, this Saturday from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Some big news was just announced as Kenny Bayless will host as referee. Something to keep a eye on.

A legacy fight for which Gennady Golovkin has been fighting for his entire career. While, Canelo makes his long-waiting debut in the Middleweight division. Las Vegas, Nevada, in which as much as GGG has accomplished in his career, this will be his first bout in the place labeled Sin City. As for Canelo, he’s absolutely no stranger to the bright lights on the Las Vegas strip.

Early on, I see the bout taking place with much eager intensity as a feeling out period can be. I believe the first 3-4 rounds will be at a steady, pick your spots pace. It will be a mistake in my opinion if Canelo goes toe-to-toe with Golovkin, at least early. Much pride is on the line here, but he must be careful. GGG might have the best jab in boxing. How Canelo will try to keep Golovkin at bay with jab will be telling. It would be a mistake for Canelo to invite GGG into the ropes. This isn’t Liam Smith, obviously.

Gameplans and adjustments are made on the fly in every sport. Something’s got to give here. If Golovkin can cut off the ring, as he does masterfully, and take it to Canelo, watch out. Canelo here has the quicker hands, but isn’t the most light on his feet. Can Canelo go at it with GGG inside? Will Bayless let GGG mug Canelo?

I want to say this goes the distance, but GGG knows that might not be the best opportunity for a win in Las Vegas against the Mexican superstar. I think GGG wears down Canelo in the late rounds. Canelo has had stamina issues in the past. I also think Canelo has over trained for this fight. Gennady Golovkin will get his signature win on Saturday night with a late round stoppage. The one win he has been waiting for his entire life.

Prediction: Golovkin


Alex Burgos, Editor-in-Chief

I’m a notorious homebody and only fight out there could have gotten me off my ass, on to a plane and into the T-Mobile Arena–Canelo Alvarez vs. Gennady Golovkin.

Arriving at the Las Vegas airport on Thursday was really impressive as everywhere I turned there was some sort of Canelo or GGG advertisement.

This is the big fight I, and the rest of the world, have been salivating and waiting for for two years.

There are tons of different variables going into this fight–will Canelo’s new Hulk frame help or hinder his performance, is GGG truly on the decline and can Canelo take the Kazakh crushers punch?

The answer to all those questions, today, is we don’t know. But, let’s imagine that both fighters are at their best and come out working their optimal game plan. Who will win?

I think that if GGG is intelligent on the defensive side and works behind his jab–the same one he relied on against David Lemieux–he will break Canelo down (mentally and physically) to earn a mid-to-late-rounds stoppage.

Canelo takes some early rounds, but GGG ends things late.

Prediction: Golovkin

To Top