Ring Rankings Update: Canelo-Golovkin 3 Results at Ranking Deadlock

Canelo Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin embrace after their third fight. Photo by Ed Mulholland/Matchroom

Canelo Alvarez finally scored a clear decision over Gennadiy Golovkin in the four-year-old rubber match in Las Vegas on Saturday. Alvarez beat his arch-rival by scores of 116-112 and 115-113 (twice), but most observers viewed the super middleweight championship as a one-sided competition in favor of the Mexican star, who is still at his apogee.

Many of those same fans and members of the media believed Golovkin, who is now clearly past his prime at 40, deserved to win his first match at middleweight in 2017, which ended in a controversial draw. The 2018 rematch, also contested at middleweight, was a heated battle that was selected as The Ring’s fight of the year. Alvarez won it by narrow majority decision, but many observers scored a draw.

Alvarez retained his 168-pound Ring/WBC/WBA/IBF/WBO titles with a UD over his arch-rival. Photo by Ed Mulholland/Matchroom

So while the official record for the Canelo-Golovkin rivalry is 2-0-1, it’s more of a 1-1-1 stalemate in the court of public opinion. The ratings result for Fight #3 was also basically a stalemate, as neither future Hall of Famer advanced or dropped out.

Alvarez (58-2-2, 39 KOs) remains the undisputed super middleweight champion and retains his fifth-place finish in the pound-for-pound rankings. Golovkin (42-2-1, 37 KOs) remains the No. 1 ranked middleweight (as well as the IBF-WBA unified title holder).

“Canelo took an early lead against a wary GGG, who rallied late but it was too little too late,” remarked panelist Anson Wainwright. “Their third chapter was the least thrilling of the trilogy.”

RING EVALUATIONS UPDATE (as of September 17):

pound for pound – Alvarez remains at No. 5.

“Canelo took care of business against GGG,” said panelist Anson Wainwright. “Not enough to move up in rank.”

Added panelist Martin Mulcahey: “It’s not one for the books on either side. The period between the rematch and the trilogy was too long when one aged up to 40. No movement for Canelo, and no jumping (Errol, ranked No. 4) Spence on this performance.

Heavy weights – Andy Ruiz drops to No. 4 after overtaking Luis Ortiz, who drops to No. 7.

“While Andy Ruiz beat Luis Ortiz, I’m not sure either gained much momentum from this one, but Ruiz remains a dangerous fight for anyone,” remarked Mulcahey. “I think the middle of the top 10 is where both belong. (Joseph ranked No. 3) Parker beat Ruiz, so he still deserves the top rating. So, one place for Ruiz and one place for Ortiz.

super middle – Alvarez remains champion. Christian Mbilli remains at No. 5 after an impressive second-round stoppage of DeAndre Ware.

Christian Mbilli

Wainwright suggested a one-spot promotion for Mbilli, switching places with No. 4-ranked John Ryder, but was overruled by editor Tom Gray and panelist Adam Abramowitz.

“As impressive as Mbilli looked on Friday, I wouldn’t put him past Ryder,” Abramowitz said. “I think he should stay where he is.”

Wainwright replied, “I debated it. However, I felt that Mbilli’s wins over Mohammedi (for which he got a jump) and Ware’s win showed he was progressing. I felt Ryder had some luck against Daniel Jacobs in February, he hasn’t fought since and had just marked the time since he gave Callum Smith hell in November 2019. That’s advice for the future and I would pick Mbilli to beat Ryder one-on-one.

Gray added, “I’m here with Adam. Mbilli is a solid talent and a big puncher, but he still fights below the top level. Mohammedi has lost as often as he has won in recent years, and DeWare hasn’t exactly turned heads.

“You said it yourself, Anson, Mbilli is ‘progressing’. Basically, he’s where he is right now because of the eye test. I expect Mbilli to go MUCH further, but he needs to get the results to move up the rankings.

“Ryder operated at a higher level and a narrow win over Jacobs trumps Mbilli’s resume with room to spare. Opinions varied on this outcome, but the vast majority of fans and pundits had Ryder beating Callum Smith.

“Who we think wins between Mbilli and Ryder doesn’t matter.”

Wainwright added that Ali Akhmedov, who edged veteran keeper Gabriel Rosado on the Canelo-Golovkin undercard “is in the 11-15 range.”

Average weight – Golovkin remains at No. 1.

“GGG said he would carry on so keep him where he is,” Wainwright said.

Junior middleweight – Liam Smith remains at No. 7 after a fourth-round stoppage of Hassan Mwakinyo.

Lightweight – Isaac Cruz remains at No. 5 after stopping junior lightweight contender Eduardo Ramirez in two rounds. Richard Commey leaves the ranking following a move to junior welterweight. Gustavo Lemos (28-0, 18 KOs) enters at No. 10.

Wainwright originally suggested Jermaine Ortiz enter at No. 10, but Abramowitz, Diego Morilla and Yours Truly preferred Lemos.

Lightweight Junior – Eduardo Ramirez exits. Lamont Roach (23-1-1, 9 KOs) returns to No. 10.

Junior Featherweight — Ra’eese Aleem drops to No. 3 after a 10-round shout out to compatriot Mike Plania, who drops to No. 9. Danny Roman quits after announcing his retirement. Takuma Inoue (16-1, 3 KOs) enters at No. 10.

Takuma Inoue

Wainwright’s suggestion of Inoue was met with some skepticism, but the panel couldn’t come up with a better addition after Roman’s exit.

“I hope there is someone more worthy than Takuma Inoue,” Gray said. “Hess has had three fights in three years and accomplished very little. That said, I looked around and the options seem limited. I’ll leave it to you guys in case I missed something.

Morilla added: “I would suggest Ludumo Lamati at 122, but Inoue has a slightly better record at this stage I guess.”

Mulcahey added: “On paper Takuma Inoue deserves No.10, he doesn’t excite me one way or another and I remember him almost accepting the loss when he was confused by ( Nordine) Oubaali in his only backhand. But others worthy of consideration haven’t had a big test yet, maybe Sam Goodman, but again he hasn’t faced a top 10.

Junior Bantamweight – Juan Francisco Estrada remains champion after a hard-fought unanimous decision against Argi Cortes. Jesse Rodriguez remains No. 3 after a tougher-than-expected unanimous decision against Israel Gonzalez.

“You can’t be spectacular every time. Rodriguez was more professional, winning a 12 round unanimous decision over the brave and game Gonzalez,” Wainwright said. “No movement.

Mulcahey added: “I’m willing to say that Bam Rodriguez’s activity (three title fights this year) against a good level of opposition is enough to blow him (Kosei, ranked No. 2) Ioka, but That (Kosei) Tanaka wins again looms large for Ioka. Really conflicted and will go with the majority vote.

Junior Flyweight – Sivenathi Nontshinga moves up to No. 5 after scoring a sensational 12-round split decision over Hector Flores Calixto. Masamichi Yabuki remains at No. 6 after a seventh-round stoppage of previously undefeated Thanongsak Simsri.

“Nontshinga edged out Calixto in a very tough fight to win the vacant IBF title,” Wainwright noted. “Nontshinga moves up two spots for the excellent road win (in Mexico).”

Straw weight – Petchmanee CP Freshmart remains No. 2 after a 12-round unanimous decision over rugged Norihito Tanaka.


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