After dismantling his most reputable opponent, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin is closer than ever to getting his shot at one of the world’s best pound-for-pound boxers. He defeated IBF champ David Lemieux on Saturday night with an eighth-round TKO, and his next fight could come against one of the top names in the sport.
Golovkin, 33, is in the conversation as one of the best fighters in the world and a dominant figure in the middleweight division. Miguel Cotto and Canelo Alvarez have also found their names in that debate, and they are set to fight on Nov. 21 in Las Vegas. Having impressed on such a big stage, Golovkin could get the winner of next month's bout, or at the very least, a shot at WBO middleweight champion Andy Lee.
The Kazakh star has not been able to secure a fight with the biggest names in boxing, but Saturday’s fight could make more boxers willing to get in the ring with the champ. It was the first time Golovkin has been in the main event of a PPV, and he sold out Madison Square Garden without much trouble. If the PPV numbers are good, Golovkin’s next fight would be financially attractive to both boxers.
If Cotto successfully defends his WBC middleweight title against Alvarez, WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman will mandate that Cotto put his belt up against Golovkin in a title unification bout. But Cotto has been unwilling to fight Golovkin in the past, and he might just choose to relinquish the belt.
Alvarez vs. Golovkin makes more sense for the first half of 2016. Alvarez is a heavy favorite to beat Cotto, and both boxers seemingly want to make the fight happen.
“Absolutely. That’s a fight that should be made. Why not? Eventually it’s gonna happen. I have no reason not to make it. Canelo wants to fight him,” Alvarez promoter Oscar De La Hoya told SecondsOut on Saturday.
“A Canelo fight with Golovkin, it has to happen. No doubt about it, no reason not to.”
A fight with Alvarez or Cotto could wait until the second half of 2016. Golovkin said he wants to own every title in the middleweight division, and that could mean a bout with Lee. The Irishman, who has wins against little-known boxers John Jackson and Matt Korobov, is set to defend his WBO middleweight championship on Dec. 19 against Billy Joe Saunders.
Lee has one loss in his career, and his last fight resulted in a draw with Peter Quillin. Lee would be considered a heavy underdog against Golovkin. Golovkin may also consider a bout with Quillin next year if he can’t secure a bout with the Cotto-Alvarez winner. The undefeated Quillin knocked out Michael Zerafa in September, and will face Daniel Jacobs on Dec. 5.
— Dan Rafael (@danrafaelespn) October 18, 2015