Is this a strong arm tactic or a side-step move?
Canelo Alvarez is arguably the biggest star in the sport of boxing. He is the biggest in North America but globally Anthony Joshua has perhaps entered the same realm at least.
The Mexican superstar is also a great fighter with a cloud of suspicion hanging over his head. After causing the cancellation of his rematch with Gennady Golovkin with two failed drug tests one would think he would be eager to further prove his innocence.
Maybe Alvarez and Golden Boy are of the belief that the news of him passing a hair follicle test proves he’s innocent? Maybe they feel he’s such a big star that this situation won’t affect his ability to draw among his largely Hispanic fan base? Obviously they believe it’s something.
After Oscar De La Hoya went on record stating that Alvarez would be tested “daily” and thoroughly, it seems they’ve changed their minds. Now they seem to be trying to make drug testing a part of the negotiations with Golovkin for a rematch in September.
“If we have a deal done, he’ll start when the contracts get signed,” Gomez told BoxingScene’s Keith Idec. “If that’s what they want, we’ll do it like that. Canelo has no problem doing that. We went above and beyond to prove that this is an accident. So all the proper protocols will be in place. There are no issues there.”
That statement itself tells you they believe Alvarez has proved his innocence. When nothing could be further from the truth. Can I say that I know 100% he cheated? Absolutely not, but can I say that I know he didn’t? Same answer. There’s simply not enough proof either way and according to WADA the hair follicle testing simply isn’t reliable enough to be credible at this time due to so many variables in the results.
I’m not sure exactly what the overall strategy behind this move is from team Alvarez but in no way can this be looked at as positive. Currently, an argument could be made that Golden Boy is the most versatile promoter in the sport as they seem to be working with everybody right now. Over the next few weeks they have cards with pretty much every other entity in the sport. But, all that simply means squat when they’re trying to pull power moves like this one.
If there are protracted negotiations, Alvarez could theoretically get away with PED use and its benefits given he’s in no testing plan due to his suspension. Alvarez is not enrolled in a voluntary testing program such as the WBC’s Clean Boxing Program – which by the way still has him ranked but that’s a story for another day and honestly I’m fed up with exposing the hypocrisy.
I’m not by no means saying this is what he’s doing but it is what can easily be perceived. With their “we’ll start testing when a contract is signed” policy, he would know when the testing would begin because it wouldn’t start until he signed a contract. Any doctor worth their degree can tell you that it becomes much easier to pass any type of drug screen when you know when it’s coming.
This is a decision that is truly perplexing to me as well as others inside the sport and there’s an angle to it. Hear me out.
What if there is no desire to actually have the rematch in September? What better excuse for it not happening than “Golovkin wouldn’t sign the contract”? Should Golovkin agree to these terms? I mean him and his trainer Abel Sanchez have been adamant about Alvarez testing between now and the rematch.
Of course this is really just speculation at this point but in my humble opinion I think Golovkin should do as my fellow scribe Wilson Urena said previously, [link below] “Golovkin, go for the glory”.
The Billy Joe Saunders fight doesn’t equal the same payday but honestly how much money does one man really need? Knowing Gennady is to know he isn’t a guy that lives lavishly by no means at all. Actually it’s quite the opposite.
Yeah one fight is for $25M plus as well as the opportunity to possibly become the “cash cow” of the sport, but the other is realistically worth $8-$15M and a shot at securing a legacy while becoming an undisputed champion in one of the sport’s most popular division’s.
By: Chris Henderson