"Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face."
~Mike Tyson

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Golovkin vs Canelo AKA The Horse And The Carrot

An Active Champion

Middleweight Champ
Gennady "GGG" Golovkin

Photo: Boxrec.com
In an era where fighting just twice a year is considered "staying busy" for fighters and understanding that activity would help broaden his brand, Middleweight king pin Gennady Golovkin began going against the grain in 2013 becoming a very busy fighter. His goal was 4 fights per year but the passing of his father in 2014 threw a monkey wrench into Golovkin's plans. Despite this the champion still managed to squeeze in 3 fights that year, with two of these fights following the tragedy and a period of mourning with his family in Kazakhstan. In 2015 he once more fought four times but after Miguel Cotto's defeat at the hands of Saul Alvarez in November of that year GGG seemed to become preoccupied with fighting Canelo. By the time 2016 reared it's ugly head it became clear that Tom Loeffler of K2 Promotions was starting to maneuver Gennady's career towards a fight with the Guadalajara native.

While it is difficult to castigate any fighter for aiming high and going for the biggest payday of their career, this maneuvering resulted in the smiling assassin fighting just twice in 2016, much to the chagrin of fans. It appeared as though Golovkin would again fight 4 times in 2017, that is until rumors of delays, injuries, and a fight with Canelo began to swirl on April 11th. These rumors brought with them a collective groan from those who want to see one of the most exciting and dramatic fighters in the sport remain active. Several prominent members of the press have reached out to K2 Promotions for answers but as of this writing nothing has been confirmed.

Fool Me Once

Saul "Canelo" Alvarez
Photo: Boxrec.com
Despite some on air bravado from Canelo he has remained reluctant and fickle when it comes to a fight with Gennady Golovkin. Publicly he's ready now and can't wait to for the opening bell to sound. Privately however he and his promoter, Golden Boy Promotions have remained coy and dance around questions when it comes the fight. It's very clear that both Alverez and Golden Boy recognize and understand the inherent dangers in facing one Gennady Golovkin.

Following his knock out of Amir Khan, Canelo invited Golovkin into the ring where the ginger remarked (in Spanish) "we don't fuck around" when asked if he was ready to face Golovkin. It has been widely reported that Golovkin and K2 Promotions had been sent an offer by Golden Boy Promotions for the fight and that GGG had declined the offer. If you do enough digging you'll find that the offer was not seriously entertained by team GGG only because it offered Golovkin a flat fee and the fight was to be contested a year down the road. GGG's decision to decline the offer was a smart one as a lot can change in a year. For some perspective, Manny Pacquiao was offered the same type of deal by Floyd Mayweather several times in the years before they finally met in the ring and as a result of the congressman's (and perhaps Bob Arum's) shrewd patience, he ended up making much more when the fight was finally made.

Canelo and his team may now finally be ready to face Golovkin though it's been clear they were not in the past. The chain yanking and carrot chasing Golovkin has endured since talks of a super fight with Canelo began would make a skeptic and a cynic out of anyone. Why then is Golovkin seemingly passing on an opportunity to become undisputed middleweight champion of the world by fighting and defeating Billy Joe Saunders in June? It's a much easier fight to both make and win. Additionally, it has been reported that Kazakhstan would be footing the bill for this fight, putting up a substantial amount of money for one of it's favorite sons to fight at home as part of a major event no less.

It's a lot like this.

Photo: giphy.com
Knowing all of this one would be remiss if they didn't ask themselves the following questions. Is Gennady Golovkin passing on his summer unification bout with Saunders because of injuries sustained against Danny Jacobs? Is Saunders reluctant to sign the contract? Is Golovkin acquiescing to Golden Boy who have made it clear that a summer fight with Saunders would kill a fight against Canelo later in the fall? Could the fight already be made and might team GGG be keeping things quiet until after Canelo/ChavezJr? Right now no one but those close to the aforementioned fighters know the answers and Tom Loeffler remains tight lipped playing things close to his chest. There may be multiple answers to these questions as the business of boxing is often complicated and convoluted. In the meantime and as it pertains to Canelo however, Golovkin and K2 would do well to remember, "fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me."

Scott Jarvis is a boxing writer for Split Decision Boxing. He can be reached on Twitter or by email at splitdecisionbox@gmail.com.


Post a Comment