Abel Sanchez was Gennadiy Golovkin’s head trainer from 2010 to 2019, but Triple G opted to split from his coach shortly after signing a lucrative deal with DAZN.
Sanchez said at the time the separation came down to money.
Sanchez guided Golovkin throughout the Kazakh KO artist’s rise to stardom and middleweight reign, which included Golovkin’s first two fights against Alvarez in 2017 (split draw) and 2018 (majority decision loss).
Golovkin – who is now trained by former cruiserweight and heavyweight contender Johnathon Banks – lost to Alvarez in the trilogy tilt via unanimous decision.
The 40-year-old Golovkin appeared unspectacular for most of the match, starting off slow before mounting a comeback toward the end.
Naturally, Sanchez was an interested observer, and he opined on the proceedings of which he witnessed.
“I was disappointed by the efforts. It looked like one guy wasn’t ready to fight, and the other guy was glad,” Sanchez told Fight Hub TV. “It didn’t go as I thought it would go. I felt like Gennadiy’s first eight rounds were like hitting the mitts. It was like two friends sparring with one another.
“Canelo was throwing punches with bad intentions, and Gennadiy was not aggressive enough to try and win the fight. It seemed like at the beginning anyway, but not toward the end.
“It just seemed like he was happy to be there and not to try and win but to go 12 rounds and survive the 12 rounds. That’s not Gennadiy to me.
“If he was 30 years old or 20 years old, okay, I could see it because he has a long career ahead of him. He’s 40 years old. He’s fighting at a weight where he’s not putting his belts in danger. Nobody has ever hurt him in a fight.
“You try to win by being aggressive. If you run out of gas, you run out of gas, but the other guy is going to run out of gas, too. He’s in the same boat. Actually, I thought Canelo may have been breathing a little heavily toward the end of the fight.
“Imagine if Gennadiy had applied some pressure, then he really would have run out of gas.
“Since we parted, he’s tried to put on a different persona inside the ring, a different style, a different way of addressing every round.
“When we were together, we addressed every round. It wasn’t a fight. It wasn’t 12 rounds, and it wasn’t what would happen in the end. I wanted to win every round and do whatever we could to win every round.
“It seemed like he was reacting to what Canelo was doing, and that wasn’t the Gennadiy that I knew. If he doesn’t want to do it, it doesn’t matter what we say in the corner.
“Johnathon was trying to urge him, but you can only do in a fight what you did in the gym. It’s not going to change his mind because he’s only intuned to what he wants to do.”
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com or on www.ManoukAkopyan.com.