A lot has been made of how Gennadiy Golovkin looked in his return win over Ryota Murata this past Saturday, much of it centered on the nearly-inevitable trilogy bout GGG could have in September against Canelo Alvarez.
Some want to see it still. Some aren’t sure it’s a good fight anymore. In a poll we’re running (still active, go vote!), it’s split about halfway, and people have a lot of thoughts one way or the other.
Promoter Eddie Hearn — who would be promoting Canelo vs GGG 3, a major money fight, for the record — learns toward it still being a great matchup, and believes part of that is that GGG moving up to 168 for the first time in his career at age 40 will help him.
“What people don’t take into account is, number one, Gennadiy Golovkin hasn’t boxed for over 400 days. Number two, Gennadiy Golovkin flew to Japan to fight the king of Japanese boxing, Ryota Murata. Number three, Gennadiy Golovkin always starts slow. And number four, there’s the argument of the age, etc, I’m not a big buyer of that. And number five, perhaps more importantly, I don’t think Gennadiy Golovkin should be boxing at 160 lbs,” he told The DAZN Boxing Show.
“How long has Gennadiy Golovkin been boxing at 160 lbs? So I think when you see a little bit, a couple of times to the body, it’s like, hmm — that’s going to be brutalizing at 160 lbs. And obviously, if Canelo Alvarez beats Dmitry Bivol, the fight (between Canelo and GGG) will be at 168, and that will benefit Gennadiy Golovkin, no doubt about it.
“Canelo is not a massive super middleweight. Those extra lbs are going to really help the tank of Gennadiy Golovkin. I actually go against some of the narrative, most people have got an agenda in that narrative, it was a really good performance (against Murata). He went to the guy’s backyard, he soaked up punishment, he comes through a couple of tough rounds, and he beat him up and stopped him and knocked him out and unified (titles.)”
But Hearn is quick to point out that Canelo (57-1-2, 39 KO) isn’t out of the woods yet, either, as he has a light heavyweight title challenge against Dmitry Bivol (19-0, 11 KO) coming on May 7.
“I’ve got to tell you, I’m not even talking about Canelo Alvarez against GGG until this Bivol fight is over,” the promoter said. “I saw clips of Bivol, he’s looking sensational on the pads — his foot work, his movement, his punching power. I’m telling you now, this may be the toughest fight of Canelo Alvarez’s career outside of Floyd Mayweather. This is a really tough fight. If he gets through, the GGG fight will happen, unquestionably. But it’s all eyes on May 7.”
Asked if he felt Bivol is the best light heavyweight in the world, Hearn like all of us stated that he believes it comes down to two guys, and what you prefer.
“I think if you’re talking about destruction and power, (Artur) Beterbiev is the guy. If you’re talking about technical ability mixed with a little bit of punch power, smartness, freshness, you’re talking about Dmitry Bivol. Beterbiev is old. There are signs against Callum Johnson, against these guys. When have you seen Dmitry Bivol hurt in a fight? When have you seen Dmitry Bivol really look like he might lose a fight? Never. How good is Dmitry Bivol? We’re gonna find out.”
Matchroom are also promoting the Canelo vs Bivol fight, which will be the first DAZN pay-per-view in the United States. You know, just for the record, and if you were wondering why Hearn doesn’t take Golovkin being old at 40 all that seriously, but Beterbiev at 37 is old based on something that happened in a fight almost four years ago. Just for the record.
Listen, obviously Eddie is a salesman and is doing some salesmanship here, but I do think the idea that Golovkin will be better off at 168 against Canelo than he was at 160 against Murata (or anyone good right now) is an interesting one, and he may well be right. GGG looks big in the upper body these days, he’s obviously had to adjust his diet, the way he trains, what he focuses on, to still make 160 comfortably and get the most of himself.
Will the extra weight be enough to make him a major threat against today’s Canelo, right in the prime of his career while Golovkin is undoubtedly faded some? That’s an interesting part of the conversation.