By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Based on many of the provocative comments Gennady Golovkin has made about Canelo Alvarez over the past six months, their rematch seems much more personal for the defending middleweight champion than their first fight.
Golovkin insists, however, that their second fight is strictly business for him, just like their 12-round draw nearly a year ago.
“No, only business,” Golovkin said prior to a press conference Wednesday at MGM Grand. “Right now, I’m 100-percent focused on a real fight, real war. It’s just business.”
For Alvarez, their second meeting couldn’t be more personal.
“It’s personal for me because of all he’s said,” Alvarez said through a translator. “But it served as a great motivation for this fight on Saturday.”
The Mexican superstar has taken offense to a lot of what Golovkin and his trainer, Abel Sanchez, have said about why Alvarez failed two performance-enhancing drug tests for clenbuterol in February.
The 36-year-old Golovkin reiterated before the final press conference that he doesn’t believe contaminated meat consumed in his native Mexico is the reason Alvarez failed those two tests. The WBA/WBC/IBO middleweight champion has called Alvarez boxing’s biggest problem and repeatedly questioned Alvarez’s integrity.
“I’m bothered by this,” Alvarez said. “I’m bothered by all the stupid things they’ve been saying and I’ve been using it as motivation in my training for this fight.”
The 28-year-old Alvarez suspects Golovkin and Sanchez have said some of the things they’ve stated to get him angry, so that he’ll take some of that emotion into the ring and abandon his strategy Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena. Alvarez assured reporters and his fans that he won’t get reckless versus Golovkin just because he is angry at him and wants to knock out his undefeated opponent.
“Maybe they believe what they said [and said it] to get me mad,” Alvarez said. “And you know what? They did it. I’m angry, but I’m gonna use it in my favor for this fight.”
Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) and Golovkin (38-0-1, 34 KOs) will headline HBO’s pay-per-view broadcast Saturday night. The four-fight telecast is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and costs $84.99 to watch in HD.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.