The recently announced trilogy fight between Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez and Gennadiy Golovkin set for September 17 on DAZN certainly piques the interest of Erislandy Lara.
So much so that the WBA (Regular) middleweight world champion didn’t hesitate to offer an early prediction for how he thinks the third bout between the rivals will go.
“I think both fighters are still at the top of their game,” Lara tells DAZN.
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“Canelo is in his prime and GGG has always been a fighter that keeps his body in great shape. It’s going to be a good fight but I’m leaning toward Canelo to win by split decision.”
That was the exact decision that Lara had tendered against him in a July 2014 defeat to Alvarez, counting as one of three controversial losses in his career.
Lara’s ledger also has a split decision loss to Jarrett Hurd in April 2018 and a majority decision defeat to Paul Williams back in July 2011.
“All my losses are questionable,” the 39-year-old Lara touts, “so technically I’m undefeated in some people’s eyes.”
Lara (28-3-3, 16 KOs) hopes that a solid showing against hard-hitting Gary O’Sullivan at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Saturday night generates interest for the Canelo-GGG III winner.
“This fight is going to be a lot more entertaining than most people are anticipating,” Lara vows.
“I’m fighting more on the inside at this stage of my career, and I’m sitting on my punches more, so being that he’s a brawler is going to be interesting.”
If his performance doesn’t catch the eyes of the Canelo-GGG III winner, perhaps a clash with WBC titleholder Jermall Charlo or WBO champion Demetrius Andrade can be set up.
“Andrade is one of the best fighters in boxing and I think he has all the tools to beat anyone on any given day,” Lara says.
“If we were to step in the ring, I believe my ring IQ would be the difference in the fight. I would make the proper adjustments to pull out the victory.”
Lara used that ring IQ to help dominate his way through the 154-pound division for a bulk of his career. At 39, the Cuban has to rely on his veteran savvy more than ever — a position that helps fuel Lara and his boxing legacy.
“I love the sport and I want to be remembered as one of the best Cuban fighters to ever step in the ring,” he says.
“To make the Hall of Fame would be special and those are the reasons why I’m still fighting, for my legacy and credibility.”