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Searching for Answers in the Canelo-Cotto-Golovkin Soap Opera

Published by Bleacher Report on Tue, 09 Jun 2015

Once Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao finally consummated their union on May 2, it marked the end of the longest-running daytime drama in boxingand, arguably, all of sportshistory.But though Money and Pacman are no more, the show must go on.Which makes the burgeoning three-way soap opera thats developed between aging middleweight patriarch Miguel Cotto, consensus 160-pound home-wrecker Gennady Golovkin and interloping red-headed stranger Saul Canelo Alvarez both undeniably compelling and conveniently timed.Its got all the must-have elements. Intimidation. Betrayal. Big money. Suspense.And, reprising his role as instigator-in-chief, its even got Freddie Roach, too.The Puerto Rican has been the lineal man who beat the man among middleweights for the past 367 days, but in addition to defending that status just once, he's shown no tangible interest in engaging the manGolovkinwhos gained almost universal recognition as his imminent heir apparent.The one defense Cotto has made came against a foe whom Golovkin had bludgeoned into surrender 11 months earlier. And though the logical response coming out of Saturdays rout of Daniel Geale would have been to give Triple-G his props, Cotto was instead eyeing more lucrative, less threatening quarry.He indicated to HBO that his next match would come later this year against Alvarezwho holds no belts in any weight classes, has never strayed more than a pound beyond the super welterweight limit and has beaten precisely zero fighters listed in anyones top-10 rankings at middleweight.The one thing he does have is pay-per-view street cred. He rode shotgun to Mayweather on the way to 2.2 million buys in 2013 before headlining a pair of his own moderately successful shows while defeating Alfredo Angulo (TKO 10) and Erislandy Lara (SD 12) the following year.Golovkin has never been part of a PPV eventa fact Roach used as Cotto-Alvarez rationale last week.Thats the biggest fight out there, he said at a pre-Geale press conference.(Golovkin) still doesnt bring enough to the table. He doesnt sell any PPVs. So youre fighting a tough guy for no money. Its just business. You have your choice of fighting two guys and so forthare you going to fight the guy who is going to make you more money' Thats the guy youre usually going to go with. Its risk and reward.Agree or disagree, its not difficult to see Roachs angle.The high-risk Golovkin has been the IBOs middleweight champion since 2011 and the WBAs since 2014, and hes not allowed an opponent to last the distance with him since 161-pound Amar Amari in 2008.The high-reward Alvarez, meanwhile, is an inch shorter than Golovkin, began his career at super lightweight and has stopped foes at a far less prodigious rate since graduating to super welterweight.As for Cotto, he took a timely off-ramp in an interview with HBOs Max Kellerman, conceding to the broadcasters assertionbased on recent weigh-insthat hes not a real middleweight, which essentially exploded the notion hed ever consider Golovkin with anything less than a court order.The problem for Triple-G' He needs Cotto far more than Cotto needs him.In fact, while a big loss to Alvarez might prompt mid-30s retirement, retaining a middleweight belt with a defeat of the 24-year-old could provide all the leverage required not for a unification match with the Kazakhstan-born slugger, but rather for a colossal checkbook score against Mayweatherwhom Cotto, without Roach, roughed up and bloodied while losing a decision in 2012."Since he's been here at the Wild Card, he's actually become a better fighter, Roach told BoxingScene.com earlier this year. And I think he has a much better shot at beating him this time out.A Canelo win over Cotto would provide Alvarez with his own chance to entice Money into a second go-round, though the more one-sided nature of their first encounter might make it less palatable outside of the Mexicans particularly rabid fan base. Ironically, then, Golovkins biggest chance to make his own breakout might ultimately come from letting someone elsenamely Caneloget to his tormentor first.In other words, if Cotto beats Canelo, life on the treadmill continues.But if Canelo beats Cotto, the finish line gets a lot closer.Golden Boy Promotions founder Oscar De La Hoya, who called Alvarez the biggest star in boxing prior to the Mayweather extravaganza in 2013, said his man revels in the idea of an eventual showdown with Golovkinand if it all comes in the form of a post-Cotto unification fight, all the better for everyone.He's willing to fight the very best. And Golovkin is no exception, De La Hoya told CBSSports.com. He's eventually going to fight Golovkin, and the question is at what point do we let him loose' The time will come. And at the right time, people will see that fight.Heres to hoping it takes less than a half-decade to finalize the script.
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