By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Abel Sanchez wasn’t surprised when Canelo Alvarez moved away from Gennady Golovkin more than he had in previous fights.
Golovkin’s trainer thought before their battle that Alvarez would get tired and inevitably “run” from Golovkin in their 12-round middleweight title fight Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena. Alvarez, who fought to a draw with the unbeaten Golovkin, has taken some criticism, particularly from Mexican fans, for not exchanging more with one of boxing’s most punishing punchers.
Mexico’s Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) clearly had his moments in their HBO Pay-Per-View main event. Sanchez still doesn’t think Alvarez did nearly enough to win, certainly not by the score embattled judge Adalaide Byrd submitted (118-110).
“I thought he ran a little bit more than I expected,” Sanchez, who is of Mexican descent, said during the post-fight press conference. “But like I said before the fight, the first three or four rounds were gonna be difficult for both guys and we were gonna wear him down, as we did. That’s why he was running. And we were gonna win the fight going away, by maybe three points, four points. Or knock him out in eight rounds. I said that to all of you. But I expected him to tire out and run like that and for us to win it by four points, which is what I think we did.”
One judge, Dave Moretti, scored the compelling, competitive fight for Golovkin (115-113). The third judge, Don Trella, had it even on his scorecard (114-114).
Like Sanchez, Kazakhstan’s Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) was surprised how much Alvarez moved during their highly anticipated showdown. The IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC middleweight champion thought they would exchange more based on how Alvarez spoke prior to their fight.
“He talked too much before fight,” Golovkin said. “He said he’s true Mexican man. I told him, ‘I bring Mexican style. I want a true fight, close distance.’ He knows he needs only decision. [From the fourth] round, he moved every round, moving. He can’t stay. It is a surprise. He’s moving. He’s not stay close to me, not in front of me.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.