By Keith Idec
Oscar De La Hoya knows nothing about Canelo Alvarez’s showdown with Gennady Golovkin will be easy.
Alvarez’s promoter still expects the Mexican superstar to emerge from a legendary fight victorious September 16 in Las Vegas. De La Hoya also told ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith during his radio show Tuesday afternoon that their 12-round middleweight championship match will remind fight fans of the brief but unforgettable brawl between Marvin Hagler and Thomas Hearns 32 years ago.
Hagler stopped Hearns in the third round of their dramatic middleweight slugfest in March 1985 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
“I like six to eight rounds of hell,” De La Hoya told Smith when asked for an Alvarez-Golovkin prediction. “I like six to eight rounds of hell, and my boy’s gonna win.”
The retired six-division champion admitted, however, that either fighter could win their long-awaited confrontation a week from Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena (HBO Pay-Per-View; $74.95 in HD).
“It’s a pick ‘em fight,” De La Hoya said. “It’s a 50-50 fight. I mean, look, these guys have been fighters all their lives, boxers all their lives, they know how to move in the ring, they know how to throw punches from different angles, they know how to bob and weave, they know how to get out of trouble when necessary, they know how to knock you out. These guys are real fighters, real boxers.
“And so the fact that you have the two top guys in the middleweight division fighting in the same ring, on the same night, this is one fight that you just don’t wanna miss. I’m telling you, it’s gonna be Hagler-Hearns all over again.”
The 35-year-old Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs) remains a slight favorite against Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs), a former middleweight and junior middleweight champion who’ll try to take Golovkin’s IBF, IBO and WBA middleweight titles.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.