Last weekend I had some good results with my combat sports predictions. Both my Shawn Porter (boxing) and Tyron Woodley (MMA) picks came through. Unfortunately, Amir Mansour could not derail the young prospect Filip Hrgovic, but I have no regrets with the pick. There was enough doubt in the matchup and incredible value in the price, that it was worth the bet. I took odds of 16/1 which had reduced to 7/1 by the day of the fight.
Shawn Porter won a unanimous decision, 116 to 112 and 115 to 113 twice. I scored the fight the same as the latter cards but at the final bell I was unsure who would win, such was difficulty in scoring several of the rounds. I said in my pre-fight pick that Porter would have his work cut out to get a decision against Garcia, and I am pleased to say I was wrong. The judging and refereeing were without issue as far as I can tell, that is unless you are a Garcia backer.
Gennady Golovkin v Saul Álvarez
I took into account the politics of boxing with my Porter pick, and that is an important issue in the upcoming mega-rematch between Gennady Golovkin and Saul Álvarez. The first fight controversially ended in a split draw and Golovkin retained his belts.
Many – myself included – thought Golovkin had done enough to maintain his 100% winning record. Judge Adalaide Byrd scored the fight a mindboggling 118–110 for Álvarez. Dave Moretti scored the fight 115–113 for Golovkin, and Don Trella scored it 114–114. I can understand how Trella achieved a draw, but the Byrd card was outrageous.
I was impressed with Álvarez and how he outboxed Golovkin at times. The problem was he only fought for 30-seconds per round, which is not a good fight winning strategy. Both men have solid chins, with Golovkin taking some absolute bombs to the mandible without issue
Gennady Golovkin v Saul Álvarez II – The Rematch
The rematch was initially agreed for May the 5th this year but was postponed after Álvarez failed a drug test for clenbuterol. He received a six months suspension by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. We can now look forward to the rematch this coming Saturday night, 15th September, to coincide with Mexican independence day on Sunday.
Using the first fight as a benchmark it seems unlikely this fight will end in a stoppage, both are too durable.
The question is, who will take the points here in Vegas, with Canelo being the Golden Boy Promotions cash cow, and one of the few top level fighters they have left on the books.
There is an interesting pattern in the odds, which reflects what many of us fear.
Coral has the following prefight odds for the fight –
Golovkin – 1.7
Draw – 23
Alvarez – 2.2
Method of Victory
Golovkin by KO, TKO or DQ – 2.7
Golovkin by decision or technical decision – 4.5
Alvarez by KO, TKO or DQ – 9
Alvarez by decision or technical decision – 2.8
Despite the first fight going to the cards – and many believing he had won – Golovkin is long at 4.5 to win a decision. By contrast, Álvarez is 2.8 by decision.
Golovkin is outright favourite and bookmakers expect him to win by stoppage.
What does this tell us? It tells us the money doesn’t think Golovkin will be able to win a decision in Vegas on independence weekend. A sad factor in the sport I love, but one we must consider when making an informed bet.
By all accounts, Álvarez has been working on his stamina issues from the first fight and is looking lean. If he can box Golovkin for longer periods during the rematch, a decision win is well within reach. It will be worth checking out the weigh-in before the fight for clues.
Golovkin is a power puncher and may force the issue this time, not wanting to leave it in the hands of the judges. If this is the case, can he stop the tough and defensively sound Mexican? I have my doubts.
With my prediction that the fight will go the distance and the idea Golovkin will struggle to get the nod in a partisan atmosphere, I will be picking Alvarez by decision.
I won’t be taking a huge risk on this one. A very small stake around 0.25% of my bankroll at most. I will also be watching as a fan and I hope for a great fight either way.
Pick: Alvarez by decision or technical decision at 2.8