By Keith Idec
Canelo Alvarez is committed to returning to the ring September 15.
Alvarez’s comeback from his six-month suspension was confirmed in a statement released by Golden Boy Promotions on Wednesday. That confirmation came in the immediate aftermath of the Nevada State Athletic Commission officially extending Alvarez’s temporary suspension for testing positive for clenbuterol twice in February.
His presumed opponent for that fight, Gennady Golovkin, isn’t completely convinced their middleweight championship rematch will take place in September. Golovkin wasn’t mentioned in Golden Boy’s press release, but their rematch clearly is the most lucrative option for both boxers, assuming the heavily favored Golovkin beats Vanes Martirosyan on May 5.
“Canelo? Right now, he is over,” Golovkin said during an open workout Monday in Glendale, California. “Do I want to have the rematch in September? We’ll see. It’s a different deal. The boxing business is crazy. I’ll fight Canelo again. Ask him if he wants to fight me.”
The 36-year-old Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) and the 27-year-old Alvarez (49-1-2, 34 KOs) were supposed to settle the controversy caused by their scrutinized draw September 16 in their rematch May 5 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Mexico’s Alvarez withdrew from their bout April 3 because he was advised that the NSAC would extend his suspension and not allow him to fight Kazakhstan’s Golovkin again May 5.
It took two weeks for Golovkin to settle on Martirosyan as Alvarez’s replacement for a 12-round title fight that was moved from pay-per-view to HBO and from Las Vegas to StubHub Center in Carson, California. Martirosyan (36-3-1, 21 KOs), of Glendale, California, has fought exclusively at junior middleweight during his 13-year pro career and hasn’t fought since losing a unanimous decision to former 154-pound champion Erislandy Lara (25-3-2, 14 KOs) in May 2016.
“I no longer think about Canelo,” Golovkin said. “I am only focused on this fight. I just want to fight Vanes. I remember him from the 2004 Olympics. I know he is not easy. Vanes is a strong and active fighter in the ring. He is a good fighter.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.