On the September 1 edition of HBO Boxing After Dark, Gennady Golovkin will defend the WBA middleweight title against European champion Grzegorz Proksa, and Sergiy Dzinziruk will take on Jonathan Gonzalez in the junior middleweight co-feature. The fighters and their promoters weigh in on the bouts below.
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Tom Loeffler, K2 Promotions (Golovkin's Promoter)
"Gennady trains in America and is committed to fighting here where there have been so many middleweight legends; we're grateful to HBO for this opportunity to showcase his skills. We strongly feel that he is the BEST middleweight in the world right now and we're anxious for the world to see that."
"I'm very excited to face Grzegorz Proksa on September 1st. Proksa has never been in the ring with a puncher like me and I'm here to show the world what I'm made of. I've wanted to fight in the United States for a long time and look forward to fighting the best middleweights in the world in the near future."
Barry Hearn, Matchroom Sport (Proksa's Promoter)
"Proksa has waited all his professional life for this opportunity and respects Golovkin for his achievements in the ring. He knows this will be a tough fight for both fighters and is convinced he can emerge victorious in an entertaining contest. Proksa has one loss on his record when he lost his European title in a controversial points decision in a fight where he suffered a terrible cut via an accidental clash of heads. That loss has been avenged via a knockout victory to regain his European crown and he does not intend to suffer a loss in this fight. The fight features the two biggest punchers in the middleweight division and I am convinced that fight will not go the distance. It's an honor for Proksa to be part of an HBO show and he is excited about winning in the USA on the biggest network for boxing in the world."
"I have no doubt in my mind that I have the ability to knockout Golovkin. My opportunity to showcase my talents to the world has arrived and I'm not going to let it slip away. This will be a difficult fight but I believe in myself to come out victorious and I'm going to bring an aggressive game plan for the fans. I'm coming to the US to impress and take home the title."
Artie Pelullo, Banner Promotions (Dmitry Pirog's Promoter)
"This is a terrific bout and I believe a new star of the middleweight division will be born on September 1st. There are three big middleweight bouts in a span of a couple of weeks and this fight involves two of the best middleweights in the world so the stakes could be very big for the winner. Pirog will be anxiously awaiting the results of this fight, as he wants his opportunity to fight the winner on HBO. There are many worthy opponents at 160, including Daniel Geale, Sergio Martinez, and Chavez Jr., and he is willing to fight anyone of them, as we believe that he might be the best, and is the biggest puncher at 160."
"It's a fact that I am unbeatable at junior middleweight. Gonzalez is a big puncher, but he's never been in the ring with a superior boxer like me. I will end his unbeaten record and move toward another world title. I will be champion once again real soon."
Artie Pelullo, Banner Promotions (Dzinziruk's Co-Promoter)
"This will be a classic boxer versus puncher matchup and as we all know, a boxer always beats a puncher. Dzinziruk will be too slick for Gonzalez. Once he wins this fight, we will work to get him another world title shot."
"Fighting on HBO is a big opportunity for me and my team. Gary Shaw has come through on his promise to get me on a worldwide stage to showcase my talent. I always bring excitement to the ring and it won't be any different when I face Dzinziruk. My goal is to become champion."
Gary Shaw (Gonzalez's Co-Promoter)
"Jonathan is highly ranked in all sanctioning organizations, and I'm sure after this fight, he will be considered by all, for a shot at a world title."
"I want to give a very special thank you to HBO and Ken Hershman for giving us the opportunity to present this great night of boxing in two very important weight divisions. I believe the real winner of this show will be the fans in attendance and the millions watching on HBO."
Leon Margules, Warriors Boxing Promotions (Gonzalez's Co-Promoter)
"Gonzalez is another great talent from Puerto Rico that we can all be excited about. Dzinziruk better be ready for a war."
Javier Bustillo, Universal Promotions (Gonzalez's Co-Promoter)
"Jonathan Gonzalez has something to prove in this fight. This is his big opportunity to show the world what he is all about. I expect him to leave everything in the ring on fight night."