The search for Gennady Golovkin’s replacement opponent on May 5th marches on as the Nevada State Athletic Commission refused to rubber stamp Jaime Munguia as a late substitution. You can’t say that Team Golovkin didn’t give it the good ol’ college try, though.
While Munguia (28-0, 24 KOs) maintains an undefeated record, the 21-year-old prospect hasn’t fought anyone even close to the level of Golovkin and hasn’t even been in a scheduled 12-rounder to this point. He also campaigns in the division below Golovkin so, yeah, it was pretty clear that he was being lined up to be a crash test dummy in a gross mismatch that was probably more dangerous than the sport inherently is.
So with Munguia officially out, Golovkin’s promoter has less than a month to find a suitable opponent for Golovkin, and familiar names are once again being raised.
Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan (27-2, 19 KOs) has been vocal about wanting the fight and Golden Boy president Eric Gomez has confirmed that he’s been contacted about O’Sullivan’s availability. He would likely be approved as a replacement opponent but the style match-up is a terrible one for him, so it poses little threat of actually being a competitive fight.
Demetrius Andrade (25-0, 16 KOs) has also publicly thrown his name in the hat for Golovkin and says if Golovkin wants to choose the best available opponent then he’s the clear cut choice. Andrade is a very talented fighter but has little drawing power — usually a bad combination in this business — so that could prove to be a really dangerous fight for Golovkin to take on short notice as it could potentially derail a big payday for Golovkin in the fall.
Another fighter who has mentioned their willingness to take the assignment is Sergiy Derevyanchenko (12-0, 10 KOs), who is currently Golovkin’s mandatory IBF challenger. Promoter Lou DiBella is currently petitioning the IBF to order that bout immediately on Derevyanchenko’s behalf, arguing that with Canelo Alvarez (the WBC mandatory) out of the May 5th fight, Derevyanchenko is next in line.
Here’s what DiBella’s attorney wrote to the IBF on the situation:
“As has always been discussed, Mr. Golovkin’s mandatory in the IBF would be due in the rotation system after his WBC mandatory was satisfied. At this moment, the WBC’s mandatory has been satisfied and expedited negotiations should begin for a bout immediately between Mr. Golovkin and Mr. Derevyanchenko. By immediately ordering that Mr. Golovkin satisfy his mandatory obligation by fighting Mr. Derevyanchenko, the IBF will not just be making the proper decision pursuant to its rules, but also shall ensure that its title and the boxers in its ratings are not held hostage. We have already contacted Mr. Loeffler and made clear our willingness to complete a deal in short order on reasonable terms with GGG Promotions for Mr. Golovkin’s next bout.”
At this point in time it’s unclear if the IBF will bite on this argument, but Team Golovkin will have to get their situation sorted out quickly if they’re to keep their Cinco de Mayo fight date.