Golovkin vs Lemieux – Pay TV Material?

2015 has entered its final third and as is such, boxing begins to provide us with at least one or two bouts which can potentially involve more than just one person occupying the living room couch.

Gone are the days where one fighter is the biggest selling point regardless of the competition.

A few decades ago, a young miscreant from the Catskill Mountains of New York by way of Brownsville, Brooklyn was able to polarize many a fight as well as sporting fan to the point of fixation over his exploits in the ring. Granted, his biggest nights in terms of eyes and interest came much later in his career, yet Mike Tyson ignited an almost atavistic peculiarity within us that made his often quickly executed destruction of his terrified opponents a sight to behold.

Anticipation of the eventual knockout followed him from the first bell and the oddities that often flowed from his lips in post fight interviews made even the shortest night a fun one. Another first round knockout? Not exactly the squarest return on one’s pay TV investment, yet the punishment of sitting through an indigestible undercard made the wash in the main event the nicest sort of letdown.

Ahead we jump two to three decades and on to the “World’s Most Famous Arena,” Madison Square Garden in Manhattan. This Saturday evening, boxing’s current knockout king, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (33-0, 30 KO’s) will lay the majority of the middleweight division’s titles on the line as he faces IBF champion David Lemieux (34-2, 31 KO’s).

The unbeaten Golovkin has recently entertained crowds from New York City to Monaco to Los Angeles. He’s provided many a change in facial expressions for those who are not only enthused by his crushing knockout power, but his delightful and good natured attitude outside of the ring as well.

With the exception of one fight in December of last year, Lemieux has not fought anywhere other than his hometown of Montreal. Promoters and pundits alike had set him up to be the pugilistic sidekick to Lucian Bute in the Quebec city, yet he suffered two consecutive knockouts in 2011 to Marco Antonio Rubio and Joachim Alcine, respectively. The last three years for David have been much better, as he’s prevailed in all of them (seven of nine by way of knockout).

In other words, we may indeed see Golovkin matched with someone who has the audacity to fire back and do so with perhaps comparable power. So, the question must be posed: now that the “big two” of boxing have now met or are near the twilight of their respective and stellar careers, is Gennady Golovkin taking part of the torch of big time fights or having it tossed to him like a grenade without a pin? More to the point, is Saturday’s contest on pay TV in the United States going to be an experiment or the norm for the Kazakhstani fighter with the huge smile? What’s known to us is that he knocks out the opposition with intense fury and might. For some, such as sports radio and TV personality Stephen A. Smith, that’s enough to push “GGG” as not only an unbeaten champion, but with as many knockouts as victories (as he professed to a caller from Washington, D.C. on Tuesday afternoon over the air) as well.

How many pay per view buys can Saturday night’s telecast aspire to collect? One quarter million? Golovkin’s promoter, Tom Loeffler of K2 Promotions believes that his fighter is ready for the spotlight based on the raucous turnout of his previous outings.

“HBO wouldn’t have given us the green light to put this on pay TV if they didn’t believe in it,” said Loeffler last week during a media conference call. “A great indicator of those sales is ticket sales. We sold over 15,000 tickets in the first week. Gennady is breaking through into the mainstream. We knew that neither fighter had been a part of a pay per view like this, but we think fans will really respond to this.”

Perhaps when one lives in one of the five boroughs of New York City or within a few hours’ train ride of Madison Square Garden, a ticket to see a potential slugfest may prove to be an evening to savor. However, are casual, as opposed to hardcore fight fans prepared to spend $49.95 or more to see the bout at home? Let’s face it, the majority of us won’t consider watching hardly anything in standard definition these days, so the HD markup of ten dollars is scarcely an issue. Is the sports world ready to embrace as well as push for crossover appeal towards an extremely likable fellow from the former U.S.S.R.? His grasp of English is near to that of Manny Pacquiao and he’s much in the same mold inasmuch as a gentleman outside the ring and a whirlwind within it.

Are we ready to move forward? Are times changing or are we staying the same? Time will tell.

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COMMENTS

-Radam G :

NOPE! This scrap is reaching for straws trying to be a PPV event. Three g is going to bring "lots of drama," in his words. But it won't catch a grand PPV audience. Holla!


-amayseng :

Can't be any worse than Floyd vs Berto, or Floyd vs the Ghost. The under card is solid enough for a ppv in my opinion when you add it with the main card


-Froggy :

The fans are getting much better value than they are used to , their own fault if they don't support this card !


-Domenic :

Agree with Amayseng and Froggy. The card is excellent and Golovkin - Lemiuex is going to be high voltage. Should be an exciting, electric night with plenty of drama building toward the main event (not a sleepy deal where your attention span is shot 17 minutes into the show due to boredom/complete disinterest in no-name minimumweights filling time). I've gotten picky with regard to PPV's simply out of principle, but I'm springing for this one --and the bloated FiOS bill-- happily.


-The Good Doctor :

No. Not even close. Especially not at 50 bones. I will give the powers that be their due though. They have hyped Lemieux enough that may make people believe he has a shot. He doesn't but that is what the hype machine is for. Also as much as I hate to admit it, I have spent a lot of money on PPV's only to find that of the better fights year after year appear on regular cable. Heck, 5 of the last 6 Ring Fight of the Year bouts have been on regular TV. Similar pattern with the boxing writers as well.


-Radam G :

No. Not even close. Especially not at 50 bones. I will give the powers that be their due though. They have hyped Lemieux enough that may make people believe he has a shot. He doesn't but that is what the hype machine is for. Also as much as I hate to admit it, I have spent a lot of money on PPV's only to find that of the better fights year after year appear on regular cable. Heck, 5 of the last 6 Ring Fight of the Year bouts have been on regular TV. Similar pattern with the boxing writers as well.
The turkeys -- I mean powers -- that be do a lot of hyping, but they also do a lot of hoping for the "theatre of the unexpected" to show some @$$. They would love for Lemieux to give 3g a "high drama" scrap for five or six super-action rounds before going into a semi coma. Holla!


-SuperLight :

Yeah, worth it for the main event and at least one bout on the undercard. In that vein, can anyone advise how one can get this card pay per view streaming? I can only find monthly and TV options on HBO's site. Please feel free to PM if it's sensitive information.


-Radam G :

Yeah, worth it for the main event and at least one bout on the undercard. In that vein, can anyone advise how one can get this card pay per view streaming? I can only find monthly and TV options on HBO's site. Please feel free to PM if it's sensitive information.
Wow! SuperLight! It is so easy breezy to get high quality free PPV streaming of every scraps in real time coming from the mainland USA and Europe. I will likely put links for you on the day (USA night) of the get downs. Holla!


-Radam G :

Yeah, worth it for the main event and at least one bout on the undercard. In that vein, can anyone advise how one can get this card pay per view streaming? I can only find monthly and TV options on HBO's site. Please feel free to PM if it's sensitive information.

->http://tinyurl.com/oq8arrf. Holla!


-the Roast :

This fight should not be on PPV. It would be a nice doubleheader on regular HBO but that's it. Lemieux is a hype job and he's going splat in one or two rounds.


-amayseng :

This fight should not be on PPV. It would be a nice doubleheader on regular HBO but that's it. Lemieux is a hype job and he's going splat in one or two rounds.
I bought it and was thoroughly entertained by all 4 fights. Well worth the money for myself


-Domenic :

I bought it and was thoroughly entertained by all 4 fights. Well worth the money for myself
I agree. The first fight was a phone booth war. The Irish guy got hit with any and everything thrown at him, most chopping rights and uppercuts. The guy either has the best chin in boxing history, or Johnson makes Malignaggi look like Sonny Liston on steroids with Plaster of Paris in his gloves. The heavyweight scrap was good filler. Gonzalez looked sensational (I don't follow the 115 pounders at all, but Viloria was brave in a no-hope situation). And Golovkin is worth the price of admission to me.