Is Golovkin vs. Alvarez Headed for a PPV Slump?

Gennady Golovkin vs. Canelo Alvarez –– it was the fight fans were demanding all last year. But now that it’s at our doorstep (September 16th), the excitement surrounding the bout is… well, underwhelming. Oscar De La Hoya and Golden Boy Promotions haven’t done enough to promote it, and all the press surrounding the event has been drowned out by the Mayweather vs. McGregor spectacle.

But forget all that. This is the fight to watch this year. Gennady Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs) and Canelo Alvarez (49-1-1, 34 KOs) are two of the best pound-for-pound fighters around, and the upcoming bout will determine the king of the middleweight division.

Let’s get to the odds!

Photo credit: Post of Kazakhstan (Wikimedia) CC License

Golovkin vs. Alvarez Odds

Odds to win:

Gennady Golovkin: 20/31 (-155)

Canelo Alvarez: 5/4 (+125)

Gennady Golovkin opened as a pretty heavy favorite (-350) but the line has tightened in the lead-up to the fight. After a shaky 12-round fight against Daniel Jacobs, Golovkin appeared vulnerable in ways we hadn’t seen before. Jacobs came pretty close to issuing Golovkin his first loss (115-112, 115-112, 114-113) and put the unbeaten Kazakhstani at serious risk. Prior to that, Golovkin battered Kell Brook but displayed a few weaknesses before taking control of the fight.

Canelo Alvarez fought Julio César Chávez Jr. earlier in the year for a Cinco de Mayo super-event and put on a helluva show. Alvarez was always the favorite, but few expected him to dominate in the way that he did. Picking Chávez Jr. apart over 12 rounds and toying with him as if it were an exhibition fight, Canelo took one of the easiest wins of his career (120-108 on all three scorecards).

At 35 years old, Golovkin is starting to show his age. Canelo, on the other hand, is nearing his prime at 27 years old. Still, Golovkin’s power is undeniable and he’s shown that if he can’t land the knockout, he can still go the distance and win on points.

Odds the fight goes the distance: 5/7 (-140)

Before going all 12 rounds with Jacobs, Golovkin had not allowed any of his previous 23 fights to reach the judges. He boasts a knockout rate of almost 90%, the highest in middleweight history.

However, Golovkin has never come up against a fighter like Alvarez. Over 51 professional fights, the Mexican champion has never been dropped. Even after taking on some very high-level fighters — Amir Khan, Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather, Shane Mosley — he’s never been knocked down.

Needless to say, neither has Golovkin. We have two heavy-hitters with two steel chins.

Over/Under on PPV buys: 450,000

Golovkin has always had trouble attracting attention. His bout against Jacobs raked in a career high of 170,000, which is peanuts compared to what Alvarez is accustomed to. The Cinco de Mayo fight brought in 1,200,000 buys, which is far more than the upcoming fight could ever hope for.

Against Liam Smith, Canelo brought in 300,000 buys. And his bout against Amir Khan played to 600,000. We can expect the Golovkin vs Alvarez numbers to fall somewhere in between.