Canelo Álvarez vs. Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin: The rivals face off in a trilogy fight

And after already inflicting 24 bruises in the ring, perhaps it’s no surprise.
But after years of speculation, the two boxing greats will square off for the third and final time on Saturday in Las Vegas with more than just title belts on the line.

When the pair touch gloves, the trilogy fight will have a personal aspect, with Álvarez telling CNN Sport’s Alex Thomas that it is “different” from his other fights.

“I think it’s different because we don’t like each other”, he explained. “We have history, so the fight is more exciting, for both of us, for the fans, for everyone.

“And I hate that kind of person, like Golovkin says a lot of things about you and then when you’re in front of that person they say, ‘Oh, I respect this, I respect that.’ I hate that. I’m really looking forward to going back.”

The last chapter

The rivalry between Álvarez and Golovkin has dominated the boxing world for almost five years, since their first fight, with ups and downs, thrills and spills.

They first fought in 2017, with GGG’s WBC, WBA and IBO middleweight titles on the line; the fight ended in a controversial draw with the Kazakh fighter claiming victory.

The disputed outcome of the fight ended in a rematch that was immediately announced, which was called off after Álvarez tested positive for a banned substance. The Mexican fighter was banned for six months as a result.

Finally, just over a year after their first fight, the two fought in a rematch, and again there was no controversy. Although Álvarez won via majority decision after 12 rounds, many again disputed whether that result was accurate, with Golovkin claiming that Álvarez had been knocked out.

GGG punched Álvarez in their second fight on September 15, 2018.

And now, almost four years after the second fight, both will go back to the ring.

Álvarez will be putting his undisputed super middleweight titles on the line, while Golovkin will be fighting at a featherweight for the first time in his career.

The 40-year-old Golovkin is coming off a middleweight unification win over Japan’s Ryōta Murata, his first fight in over a year.

But for Álvarez it’s a different story.

In his previous fight in May, the 32-year-old was stunned by Russia’s Dmitry Bivol in a lightweight title fight, with all three judges ruling in Bivol’s favor – just the second loss of his career.

The weight went up for Álvarez, although he doesn’t blame this increase for the failure, saying: “A lot of things happened in my training.”

However, this loss only made him more dangerous, as he says he “learned a lot” from it. “I think I’m more dangerous than before because I’m hungry to come back,” said Álvarez.

“And I’m very competitive. Like I said before, when you’re chasing greatness, there’s going to be tough times. But that doesn’t mean I’m not going to accomplish what I want, my goals. So I’m looking forward and I’m ready to come back.”

Álvarez celebrates after defeating Golovkin in their middleweight title fight on September 15, 2018.

While his trilogy fight with GGG is the latest in a long string of high-profile fights for Álvarez, he says — as he prepares for his 62nd pro fight — he’s driven by more than titles and championships.

“I always feel like the best fighter in the world, since I started boxing. I feel the best because I’m the only fighter who doesn’t have to take risks. I take risks because I want to be great, not just be a champion. There are many champions out there. It’s the difference between me and the two of them. that I risk everything to be great.”