Andre “SOG” Ward vs Gennady “Triple G” Golovkin has become one of the hottest topics being talked about in the sport among hardcore boxing fans. On paper, it’s a tremendous matchup pitting two decorated amateurs with Ward (28-0, 15KOs) winning a Gold medal in the 2004 Athens Olympics and Golovkin (34-0, 31KOs) earning a Silver medal that same year in their respective weight classes. Since, the two fighters have gone on to go undefeated in their campaigns as pros earning their statuses among the best pound for pound fighters in the world today.
The Kazakh star, Golovkin, has become a fan favorite amongst boxing fans because of his charming smile, likeable personality, and a very entertaining fighting style. Golovkin has been destroying his opponents, stunning the boxing world with his punching power and currently riding a streak of 21 straight knockouts. Like every top fighter in boxing, Golovkin has his share of critics and the knock on Golovkin is that he hasn’t faced the biggest names or the best competition available at or around the middleweight division.
However, there’s no denying his popularity, and because of the way he’s been dispatching his opponents, Gennady is one of the best fighters in the world today.
Andre Ward, since defeating Carl Froch to win the Super Six Tournament, has seen his career momentum slowed a great deal. He’s fought only 3 times since winning the Super Six with his long stretches of inactivity having to do with injuries and a litigation battle with his former promoter Dan Goossen.
However, despite the inactivity, and because of his accomplishments, Ward is still considered an elite fighter. Ward is one of the most versatile fighters in boxing. He can fight inside, he can fight outside, he can box, counter and fight, which makes his potential fight with Triple G arguably the most anticipated matchup in boxing.
HBO boxing analyst Max Kellerman, in a recent interview with fighthype.com, gave his thoughts on why this potential fight has not been made.
“The fight is not ready yet first of all,” said Max Kellerman. “I’ve talked to Andre Ward about this when he calls out Triple G and I say Andre that could be a really big fight or it can be a kinda big fight. But Andre is so competitive if he sees another fighter getting love, especially if he feels that the fighter is being handled with kid gloves.”
As much as boxing fans just want to see the best matches, this fight is not ready yet because of the financial demands both fighters would want for such a significant bout. As popular as GGG is, he’s still not at the crossover level of say a Manny Pacquiao or a Floyd Mayweather. Triple G is slowly but surely building his brand becoming one of the best ticket sellers for boxing in North America.
However, Golovkin still needs that big name opponent to gauge just how successful a PPV Franchise Triple G can be.
Canelo Alvarez with his recent win over Miguel Cotto would be that big name opponent for Triple G but over the years not many of the top middleweights have shown a willingness to fight Gennady.
Andre Ward, on the other hand, as accomplished as he is, has yet to headline a PPV event altogether and the stretches of inactivity have really hindered his career. He received another setback by pulling out of the co-feature slot for the Canelo vs Cotto HBO Pay Per View undercard because of knee inflammation. Ward will likely return early next year with major plans that could really enhance his career.
“I think Golovkin will fight anybody except Andre Ward at this point,” stated Max Kellerman to fighthype.com. “You’re coming on the scene, you’re building a business and now you’re to supposed to jump to a division above you to take on possibly the best pound for pound fighter in the world before that fight is huge money?”
Of course, Golovkin and his team have stated in the past that their main focus is to conquer the middleweight division by collecting all of the alphabet belts but would entertain a fight at super middleweight if the reward is big enough. At the moment, an Andre Ward fight is too much risk and not enough reward considering a potential bigger money fight with Canelo could be made for some time in 2016.
“Why is that fight not being made? All I can tell you is put myself in everyone’s shoes and say what would I do,” said Max Kellerman. “If I were handling Triple G’s career, I would probably look for a way not to fight Andre Ward at the moment. If I were handling Andre Ward’s career, I’d like to fight Triple G because I’m bigger, a better boxer and as popular as GGG is a win would be good for me.”