After seemingly endless false starts, Gennadiy Golovkin is officially set to defend his IBF middleweight title against undefeated mandatory challenger Kamil Szeremeta on Friday, December 18th. The fight airs live on DAZN from Hollywood, Florida’s Hard Rock Hotel.
Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KO) fights for the first time since controversially reclaiming the belt with a decision over Sergiy Derevyanchenko in October of last year; the 38-year-old had previously bounced back from his unsuccessful rematch with Canelo Alvarez by stopping Steve Rolls in four. The fight, billed as a record 21st title defense despite some questions about the legitimacy “GGG’s” initial WBA “world” middleweight title, will also likely be the first of his revised deal with DAZN
He’s seen date after date fall through for this matchup due to COVID and injury, including ones in February, March, April, and June.
Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KO) made his first stateside appearance on that same card, needing just 3:45 to wipe out the overmatched Oscar Cortes. He’s spent the majority of his eight-year career in his native Poland, though he did make brief sojourns to Italy and France to defend the European middleweight title against Alessandro Goddi and Andrew Francilette on their home turf.
As we’ve said before, it’s not a great fight, but Golovkin’s struggles with Derevyanchenko keep it from being a particularly grievous mismatch. This should at least give us a decent idea of what the Kazakh mauler still has left in the tank before a potential trilogy match with Canelo early next year.