LOS ANGELES -- Canelo Alvarez said his upcoming matchup with rival Gennadiy Golovkin is "personal" and it would be "sweet" if he got to send Golovkin into retirement.
Alvarez said Friday during a news conference in Hollywood that he does not like Golovkin and believes "GGG," who is beloved by fans, is phony. The two will meet for the third time Sept. 17 in Las Vegas.
Alvarez and Golovkin fought to a draw in 2017, and Alvarez won the rematch in 2018. Both of those fights were very close decisions and Alvarez has taken umbrage with the fact that Golovkin has intimated that Alvarez has been avoiding a third fight for the past four years.
"He always pretends to be a nice guy, like in front of people," Alvarez said. "He's an a--hole, that's what he is. He's an a--hole. It is what it is. I don't pretend to be nice. This is the way I am. I don't pretend to be another person. He's always pretending in front of you and people, 'Oh, I'm a nice guy.' He's not."
Meanwhile, Golovkin said Friday that there's nothing personal about the fight, and he thought any beef between the two was squashed when they hugged after the second fight. Alvarez scoffed at that notion, saying Golovkin "knows" why Alvarez is upset.
"He always talk about I'm scared, I'm running away when I'm fighting the best guys out there and he's fighting with Class D fighters," Alvarez said. "He's talking a lot of things about me. That's why it's personal for me."
Alvarez is ESPN's No. 4-ranked pound-for-pound boxer. At 168 pounds, he is ranked No. 1; Golovkin is No. 2 at 160 pounds. The trilogy fight will take place at 168 pounds after the first two were fought at 160. Alvarez, 31, is the undisputed champion at 168 pounds. Golovkin, 40, holds two belts at 160.
The two had an intense stare-down Friday that went on for nearly two straight minutes without either one of them breaking his gaze.
Golovkin, through an interpreter, said he did not want to answer any "provocative" questions about what he thinks of Alvarez. But he added that the Mexican star should not have gotten off without a hit to his reputation after testing positive for the banned drug clenbuterol before their second fight in 2018. Alvarez has denied knowingly ingesting the substance.
"If he did something wrong once, it cannot be completely forgotten," Golovkin said. "You don't come out clean after you did something wrong. It'll stay with you."
Alvarez said he plans on coming out more aggressively and looking for a knockout after falling via unanimous decision to Dmitry Bivol on May 7. And there's nothing Alvarez wants more than to make this Golovkin's last fight.
When asked what it would be like if he sent his rival into retirement, Alvarez replied: "So sweet."