Boxing needs stars. Has always, always will.
The ones we got now, Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto are, don't want to break it to you rudely, not young.
Mayweather is 38 on Feb. 24, the Congressman turns 37 in December, and Cotto, at 35 in October, has been thru many a war.
New blood is begin auditioned all the time…Gennady Golovkin, for my money, is on the real short list of potential takeover artists in the next two years.
Filthy power. Boyish good looks.
Yeah, broken English, but it only makes him more lovable, as he dispenses semi-bizarro and mangled and uproarious phrases which get picked up and whip around Twitter fast and furious. They find “the Good Boy” somewhat naive and that, combined with an ability to concuss foes with a near-Tysonesque certainty, is making Golovkin must-see TV. You can check him out for yourself this Saturday, on HBO. At 5:45 PM ET, we will see if Martin Murray, who a couple years ago opined the best way to deal with Triple G is not with gloves on, but a baseball bat in hand, can go the glove route and keep from being a victim of the Beiber-faced banger from Kazakhstan.
About that homeland…Gennady has lived in Germany since 2006. He digs it there, and that landing place has certainly worked for Wladimir Klitschko. But even if God doesn't always bless America, there is an awareness that in many ways, our ability to manufacture and keep entertainers, in the sports, and cinema, and musical realms, relevant and being potent revenue drivers makes our shores an attractive destination for people like Golovkin. Make it here, make it anywhere. And make more here…
So, I posed to the masher days out from his tussle with Murray, what about making the US your home, for more months than you do when you hit camp in Cali, in Big Bear (Southern California) with tutor Abel Sanchez?
“I have been looking at homes in Southern California and probably will be living in America by March first,” Golovkin told me. “Right now, my career is very important and my son starting school here is also. I understand my situation right now, the future depends on my family's happiness. Professional boxing is more popular and has a bigger fanbase in America (as opposed to in Monaco that region, where he will have fought three times in the last three years.)
The son, Vadim, is almost six years old; all of us fans are hoping that somebody steps up, be it Miguel Cotto, Canelo Alvarez, Floyd Mayweather, whoever, and when Vadim turns 7, Triple G will have had that signature bout which will potentially make him an overwhelming breakout star. He's I'd say on the cusp, now, getting swarmed pretty good when out and about, especially within the boxing-world context…
I asked Trip G how he is able to stay focused on the same level when he isn't able to secure a date against an “A” name.
“I understand my situation,” he told me. “When I first fought on HBO, my coach told me that staying busy would be the way to get the biggest fights. Cotto is the WBC champion and should fight his mandatory. If he does not and vacates then I will prepare to fight the next available contender. Canelo is a strong fighter, I hope he wants to fight me this year. Mayweather is considered the best right now, but if he wants to prove that he is the all-time great, I can make 154 pounds. I just want to fight and have dramatic fights.”
A-effin-men, sir. That's the spirit, that's the attitude and that's the sort of mindset which should, I think, be rewarded, and has me considering GGG right there with Sergey Kovalev and one or two others as being worthy near-future leaders for a sport which is right now in something of a reset mode, with attempts being made to position it as a “Big Five” professional sport, with football, basketball, baseball and hockey..
“First, Martin Murray. He is a dangerous, strong fighter. And of course, I'm ready. Thank you to my fans,” Golovkin said, in closing, “and I am ready to fight everybody, but Murray first.”
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