With the Mayweather-Pacquiao fiasco behind us, at least as far as the fight goes, and Gennady Golovkin fresh off his impressive stoppage win over Willie Monroe Jr., there has been some noise pertaining to a potential Mayweather-Golovkin clash.
Golovkin is slowly but surely becoming the must-see fighter in boxing because of his attacking style and two handed power. Now, there can be no mistaking Gennady’s credentials, however, Sergey Kovalev has been every bit as impressive, he’s more versatile and he’s clearly beaten better opposition due to the fact that the light heavyweight division is currently much deeper than the middleweight division.
Back to the Mayweather-Golovkin chatter. Yes, it would be an incredibly intriguing matchup. No, the interest wouldn’t be as big as it was for Mayweather-Pacquiao because Golovkin 33-0 (30) is not as well-known or nearly the world superstar that Pacquiao is. However, the drama would be much greater because Mayweather 48-0 (26) would clearly be the Vegas underdog. Yes, I had to be clear and state the Vegas underdog because if they were to fight and Golovkin foolishly agreed to a 154 pound catch-weight, and the fight is at the MGM Grand, I’d probably make Floyd the favorite.
I’m amazed every day how boxing writers and fans think if Mayweather and Golovkin agreed to fight at 154, how they really believe it would be a legitimate showdown and boost Mayweather’s status if he won – and obviously reduce Golovkin’s if he lost?
The fight would prove nothing. If Mayweather and Golovkin ever step into the ring, it must be for Gennady’s belts and contested at the 160 pound middleweight limit. No catch-weight stipulation, no gimmicks or cons, a real fight just as if Golovkin were fighting Willie Monroe or Daniel Geale again – as full-fledged middleweights. The challenge for Mayweather would be to see if he, as the smaller fighter, could defeat a slightly bigger and outstanding fighter? The way Sugar Ray Leonard did Marvin Hagler and Bernard Hopkins did Antonio Tarver. And don’t get me started on Michael Spinks and Roy Jones beating Larry Holmes and John Ruiz, who both weighed 50 pounds more than any fighter Michael or Roy ever fought.
Has anyone reading this ever seen Golovkin fight at 154? No! Then how in the hell does anybody know what kind of fighter he is at that weight? If Floyd beat him at 154, that’s not beating the same guy who Daniel Geale, Martin Murray and Willie Monroe had to contend with. I’d be willing to bet all three of them would’ve fared much better had Gennady been forced to weigh in at 154 when they fought him. If Golovkin and Mayweather fought, Gennady would carry one advantage into the ring, physicality and strength. If he is forced to suck down an extra six pounds, that’s gone. So what would be the herculean feat on Mayweather’s part be if he beat GGG via stripping away his only advantage before they laced their gloves on?
Haven’t boxing fans been gouged and hosed out of their money enough by paying for Mayweather’s illusions? It seems that those who think Mayweather-Golovkin at 154 is a legit matchup never had to cut weight for a combat sport like boxing/wrestling. Everybody, at least I thought, knew that fighters/wrestlers take their weight down as low as they can while still retaining as much of their strength as possible. If 154 was no big deal for Golovkin, he’d be fighting there. Sure, his team has said Gennady can make 154, but what do you expect them to say with so much money involved? I’ll tell you what they’re not going to say, and that is Gennady will be a skeleton with skin and with a dramatic reduction in strength at the weight.
Losing those last six pounds would rob Golovkin of so much of his natural strength it wouldn’t be funny. And there’s no way he could rehydrate back what he lost in 24/36 hours. It just doesn’t work that way. No way the week before the fight while his body is running on fumes does he get it all back after the weigh in.
Greatness is about taking risk and every all-time great in history has done so. It’s not like Mayweather has to fight him. The incentive for Floyd would be to for once beat a legitimate outstanding fighter who is in his prime and a little physically bigger than he is. Nowhere is it written that he has to be the middleweight champ. But if decides he wants that coveted sixth title, he has to fight the middleweight champ as a middleweight. The same way Roberto Duran, who weighed less than 135 for his pro-debut, and Sugar Ray Leonard, who made his debut as a welterweight, both did when they fought Marvin Hagler. And Golovkin is no Hagler, at least not yet…and both Roberto and Ray lived to tell their children they fought the great Marvin Hagler.
In all honesty, the only fight Mayweather could take that’s even worth paying fifty dollars for would be Golovkin at 160. I mean, does anyone really need to be held up again without a gun to their temple by paying for Mayweather-Pacquiao II/Alvarez II/Cotto II/Amir Khan or Kell Brook? Mayweather fighting Golovkin would be the ultimate way for Floyd to close his career. If he lost, it wouldn’t hurt his legacy a bit because he’s not supposed to win…and if he did, his legacy would really explode. But it would have to be at 160 or it wouldn’t count.
Seeing if Mayweather could beat Golovkin at 160 is a big deal. Watching him beat Golovkin at 154 might as well be sanctioned by the WWE.
Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com