Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez are destined for a rematch after the pair's WBA super, WBC, IBF and IBO middleweight world title fight was scored a split draw in Las Vegas. Triple G was the chief aggressor throughout but the fight was inexplicably called a dead heat after an exhilarating contest.
The judges scored the fight 115-113 for Golovkin, 118-110 for Canelo and 114-114 - to the disbelief of the capacity crowd at the T-Mobile Arena. Though Golovkin remains the four-belt world champion he loses his 100% winning record, setting up the tantalising prospect of a second clash in 2018.
"Yes of course [I want a rematch], ultimately yes," Canelo, 27, told HBO. "if the people want it then yes. this is a draw. I was there to fight.
Golovkin added: "Of course I want a rematch. I want to fight. I have my belts, I want a championship fight."
The most anticipated fight of the year - a fortnight on from the circus of Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor - brought together two of the most explosive fighters on the circuit. While Golovkin brought an 89% knock-out rate and an unbeaten record, Canelo had youth on his side, eight years, and possessed the greater speed and counter-punching ability.
And their respective attributes were highlighted during a cautious yet intriguing opening, with Golovkin throwing a deluge of punches, but with Canelo having more success off the back-foot. The Kazak fighter was having little success until rounds four and five when Canelo was twice pinned on the ropes, allowing Golovkin to connect.
The 35-year-old was becoming an increasing threat as the fight reached the half-way stage, though Canelo remained passive at best. Six rounds in and neither fighter could claim to have a clear lead on the judges' scorecards given the flurry of punches being delivered by both men.
Canelo was continually being forced onto the ropes but Golovkin was refusing to commit to the attack in the fear of being caught by the Mexican. The champion's tactic therefore appeared to be relying on wearing down Alvarez rather than seeking a killer blow.
Golovkin was now the main protagonist with Canelo defenceless at the times to prevent the barrage of shots coming his way. Key for Canelo was his inability to back-up his own big-punching reputation - he had 34 knock-outs from 49 bouts - with Golovkin walking through his best efforts.
In the 10th, Canelo rocked Golovkin with a fine right hand as the eastern European stumbled in the centre of the ring, the first time he had been noticeably hurt in the contest. But Golovkin rallied as he moved closer to victory, leaving Canelo needing some late heroics to turn the contest around.
Both men exchanged huge shots in the final round as Canelo searched for the knock-out needed for victory; an assault which allowed Golovkin to connect himself. At the final bell both men raised their arms in victory, but there seemingly appeared little doubt over the result. However, the 22,000 crowd in Nevada were left astounded as the result was read out; though it raises the prospect of a second fight in 2018.