By Keith Idec
Abel Sanchez doesn’t hold back when you ask him for reasons why Gennady Golovkin will beat Canelo Alvarez in their long-awaited middleweight title fight next month.
Golovkin’s veteran trainer concedes, though, that an aging Golovkin will encounter a much-improved Alvarez when they square off September 16 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The 27-year-old Alvarez is 7-0, including four knockouts, since suffering his only professional defeat, a majority decision loss to unbeaten legend Floyd Mayweather Jr. nearly four years ago.
“Tremendous improvement,” Sanchez said during a conference call Monday. “I think, like I said, [trainers] Eddy and Chepo [Reynoso] have done a fantastic job. I think when we had him here [for sparring in Big Bear Lake, California] at 19, 20 years old, he looked like a star, like he could have been a star.
“He looked like he was progressing, but the fights that they put him in, the challenges that they have given him, have developed him into the star that he is today. I see tremendous improvement.”
Eddy Reynoso also believes Alvarez has improved considerably since he lost his 12-round junior middleweight match against Mayweather (49-0, 26 KOs) in September 2013.
“We are working like we always do on all aspects – conditioning, counter-punching, attacking, movement,” Eddy Reynoso said through a translator on the same conference call. “I truly, truly believe that Canelo is a more complete fighter, a more intelligent fighter, and putting it all together on the 16th, that will let us come out with our hand raised.”
Mexico’s Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs) is a slight underdog (+125) with about a month to go before his HBO Pay-Per-View fight against Kazakhstan’s Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs). They’ll fight for Golovkin’s IBF, IBO and WBA 160-pound championships in their scheduled 12-rounder.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.