And still the world champion and his challenger did not look each other in the eye. Not even at the final press conference before Saturday’s mega-millions rematch on the Vegas Strip.
For the first time since their second fight was announced on February 27, they were in the same room together.
Middleweight king Gennady Golovkin posed for photographs in a grand theatre here in is work clothes, Canelo Alvarez prowled the other end of the stage ln his expensive suit before taking his solitary turn front of the cameras.
Gennady Golovkin (R) and Canelo Alvarez (L) shared a press conference on Wednesday
Golovkin defends his middleweight titles when they meet in Las Vegas on Saturday night
It was as if a restraining was in effect, keeping them at least 30 feet apart.
Saturday night’s bid to settle their highly dubious draw a year ago promises to be a thunderous thriller. But it has been preceded by the quietest, weirdest promotional even in ring history.
The atmosphere was painfully hushed. The words awkwardly brief. There were not even cheers from the rival camps, ust polite applause. Canelo’s fabled Golden Boy promoter Oscar De LA Hoya, who has been a third-party protagonist through the hostile build up, was conspicuously absent. But then he can be exciteable.
The fighters, for their part, really do intend doing their talking in the ring.
The ritual face-off has been part of boxing for more than a century but Alvarez was the main protagonist in breaking with that tradition.
The fighters broke with tradition and did not engage in a face-off after addressing the media
His refusal to breathe the same air as Golovkin came as the aftermath of Canelo’s two failed drugs tests grew increasingly hostile.
Canelo flatly refused to join Triple G in the customary trans-America promotional tour.
Golovkin proceeded to debunk the Alvarez excuse for testing positive for the prohibited drug clenbuterol that he had unwittingly eaten contaminated meat in Mexico. Canelo resented being called a liar and a cheat by Golovkin.
The false courtesies were strained. Alvarez did say; ‘I will knock him out to bring a great victory for myself, my family, my team and to my entire country on this Mexico Independence Day.’
‘I will knock him out to bring a great victory,’ the Mexican sensation Canelo claimed
Golvokin recognised the significance of the date which brings tens of thousands of celebrating across the border by saying: ‘This is the biggest fight in boxing and I want it to be a great fight, too, as gift to the Mexican people, many of whom are among my fans.’
The response from the few of us admitted to the auditorium, virtual silence.
Spooky. But a sudden announcement that the lest few tickets for Saturday night in the T-Mobile Arena.
*Golovkin v Alvarez will be televised live this Saturday night on BT Sports Box Office