Gennady Golovkin’s ongoing search for a prominent adversary hopes to be coming to an end soon but it might not be the fighter you are expecting.
Golovkin’s upcoming fight against undefeated Dominic Wade (set to take place April 23 from the Forum in Inglewood, CA) is supposed to be the final tune-up before the 33-year-old Kazakh star finally gets to add one of Boxing’s elite names to his résumé in the fall.
K2 promotions had been hard at work trying to secure a fight between Golovkin and the newly crowned WBC middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, and it seemed that a Canelo-GGG fight would be inevitable as Golovkin is the mandatory challenger for Canelo’s WBC title.
Both K2 (Golovkin) and Golden Boy Promotions (Canelo) appeared to have an agreement that the two would meet in September following voluntary defenses by both champions in the spring but recent media comments made by Canelo show that Golden Boy might want to push the Golovkin fight back a couple of years to make the fight a bigger event.
The WBC has stated previously that the winner of Canelo-Khan would have 15 days to negotiate a fight with Golovkin or be stripped of the WBC belt but Canelo looks to have different plans in mind.
Golovkin has been desperate for a star worthy opponent to help build his brand and there in no better time than now for the 33-year-old to become the prime time star many in the boxing world believe he can be.
When asked his opinion on Alvarez’s comments by reporters Thursday in New York, Golovkin responded, “I think it’s not legal,”. The IBF and WBA champion added “Two years? I feel great. I’m ready – not to wait two years. I want now.”
Golovkin’s promoter, Tom Loeffler, reaffirmed Golovkin’s plan to unify the middleweight division with or without Canelo. “You can’t force someone to get into the ring,” Loeffler said of Alvarez. “If they don’t want to fight, then you can’t force him. (Golovkin’s) goal is to unify the entire middleweight division. He would then – if he doesn’t fight (the winner), he would, by default, get the WBC title and then (Golovkin’s) only missing the WBO title and we go from there.”
Golovkin’s team still has it’s eyes on a career defining fight for his next bout
with Loeffler citing Danny Jacobs, Billy Joe Saunders, and Gilberto Ramirez as possible foes for Triple G but it is his mention of 51-year-old former middleweight and light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins that could give Golovkin the credible name he has been yearning for.
“The priority would be Canelo (Alvarez) or a unification fight with (WBO titleholder) Billy Joe Saunders but Bernard is another one,” Loeffler told reporters in New York. “If we can’t get one of those fights, if we can’t get a Danny Jacobs type-of-fight or (Gilberto) Ramirez then Bernard would certainly be a…He’s a legend. It would be a huge name for him.”
Hopkins(55-7-2, 32 KO) certainly is passed his prime and is coming off a decision loss to Sergey Kovalev in November of 2014 but would still represent the biggest name Golovkin has faced to date and possesses the ring IQ to at the very least put Golovkin’s impressive knockout streak in danger.
“He’s physically much bigger than Gennady,” Loeffler said. “Bernard has never been stopped in his career. Gennady has a long knockout streak, so you’d have two forces coming together and that’s a very interesting fight. I have to go down Plan A, Plan B, Plan C, Plan D and E and F just to see who would get in the ring with him.”
Hopkins has stated recently in an interview with ESNEWS that he plans to fight again and has designs of a dangerous fight where he would be a 20-80 underdog. Although not naming Golovkin outright, it is a fight where he would be a significant underdog and would fit what Hopkins describes as challenging himself.