Tuesday, May 30, 2023  |



Gennady Golovkin intent on unification, wants Cotto-Canelo winner

Fighters Network
Gennady Golovkin (L) clips David Lemieux with a hard left during their fight on Oct. 17, 2015. Photo by Naoki Fukuda.

Gennady Golovkin (L) clips David Lemieux with a left hook during their fight on Oct. 17, 2015. Photo by Naoki Fukuda.

Two weeks ago middleweight sensation Gennady Golovkin strengthened his grip on the division with a beatdown of David Lemieux, adding the IBF strap to his WBA title.

“It feels good, David is great champion,” Golovkin told RingTV.com while attending the WBC convention in Kunming, China. “It was a unification fight, it’s not easy fight, very important fight for me.”

Golovkin, who upped his record to 34-0 (31 knockouts) in the process, is keen to continue his forward momentum.

“I am very happy,” he said. “It is yesterday ÔǪ next step is a unification fight. My goal is all the belts in the middleweight division.”

His eyes are firmly set on the winner of the upcoming Miguel Cotto-Canelo Alvarez fight scheduled for Nov. 21 in Las Vegas.

Currently, Cotto holds the RING Magazine and WBC belts. The WBO title belongs to Andy Lee.

Tom Loeffler, managing director of K2 Promotions, has played a prominent role in masterminding Golovkin’s career since he moved to America in 2011. He is unsure of their next move at this point.

“It’s hard to say, it’s on what happens in (Cotto-Canelo),” said Loeffler. “It really depends what the winner decides. The WBC mandate is they have 15 days to make a decision. It’s not up to us, it’s up to them. Gennady doesn’t care who wins, we all have respect for both Cotto and Canelo, they’re two great champions. He just wants the WBC title and that’s the priority at this point.

Andy Lee against (Billy Joe) Saunders is a great fight, Danny Jacobs is a great fight with (Peter) Quillin so the middleweight division is having a lot of great fights right now.”

However, the focus is clearly on the winner of Cotto-Canelo. If that were to happen and, in theory, be next May on Cinco De Mayo weekend, Loeffler would expect his fighter to not fight beforehand: “If it goes in May, that would be one fight he’d wait on because we’d have to build up that promotion.”

In the way only he can, when asked who he thought would prevail from the Cotto-Canelo fight, Golovkin said, “It is good fight, both great champions. I am not God. I think fans win.”

As Golovkin continues to excel, his star continues to rise with TV commercials and other endorsements. He truly believes in being a global star and wants to fight around the world.

Loeffler points out that part isn’t a problem: “The problem isn’t where to fight, the problem is getting the opponents in the ring for him.”

The Kazahkstan-born fighter agreed.

“It doesn’t matter where. They want (to fight) in the street, (we’ll fight) in the street,” he said. “If they want (to fight) in a room, (it’s) in room.” (Laughs.)

He is widely regarded as the best middleweight in the world but where does he see himself, pound for pound?

“I don’t know, there’s lots of great champions, all got different styles,” he said. “I think first place is vacant. Maybe in the future.”

Golovkin also places importance on interacting with fans, and was well received in China.

“I respect my fans, not just my fans, all boxing fans,” he said. “It’s very important for young people, for the sport.”

“This is Gennady’s commitment to his career,” added Loeffler. “We did a lot of promotion for the New York fight, now he’s in China. He’s been invited to a Dallas Cowboys game in Texas, he’ll be at the Cotto-Canelo fight in Las Vegas.

“He understands, not only his performance in the ring but everything outside the ring and his character as an ambassador for the sport of boxing, that’s really his dedication for the sport.”

Questions and/or comments can be sent to Anson at [email protected] and you can follow him at www.twitter.com/AnsonWainwright