Today’s Duran vs. Leonard: Golovkin vs. Stevens
On June 20th 1980, boxing fans were treated to what would be the beginning of a legendary rivalry by two of the most revered boxers of all-time. Sugar Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran treated the world to a fight no one would soon forget. For 15 rounds, the two traded and exchanged punches, combinations, and wits with the goal of proving their dominance in the sport.
Each man wanted to leave behind a legacy. Sugar looked to prove that he could stand toe to toe con las “Manos de Piedras” to show the world that he is not just a defensive and elusive boxer with a nice smile. Roberto Duran on the other hand, looked to break Leonard down and punish him to submission. Duran wanted to prove that he was the best in the world. On that night, Duran and Sugar gave fight fans a display of ruthless aggression and determination that would last a lifetime.
Our generation needs another bout like this to come around. One so evenly matched and full of wondrous possibilities, that fans will be unable to depict a winner. It will be the fighters who shape their legacies and shape a defining moment in their career. Floyd Mayweather Jr. is unanimously the best fighter this generation. Time and time again he has shown the world that no style of fighter can figure out the rubix cube he puts in front of them. He displays such defensive brilliance and ring generalship not duplicated by any fighter in the current fight world. But something in his career seems to lack. It is that Sugar Ray vs. Duran like moment. One were he can demonstrate that brains beats bronze. This is what is missing in his legacy. Although it is true that he has defeated the likes of Saul Alvarez, Miguel Cotto, Robert Guerrero, and De la Hoya, Mayweather still lacks a true defining career fight.
Many fans have been clamoring for a Pacquiao vs Mayweather fight. Yes, this fight brings a lot of interesting scenarios, a ton of revenue, and has epic written all over it, but the reality is that it is close to four years over due. This may no longer be the fight that define Mayweather’s career.
A new contender has risen from the depths of a small town in the Karagandy Province named Gennady “GGG” Golovkin. Although he does not posses the same attitude and in ring antics as Roberto Duran, the Good Boy has continued to bulldoze over the competition winning his last 15 fights in a row. This amateur powerhouse, now top pro fighter has demonstrated an uncanny ability to knock his opponents out, while still being able to box them. He may not possess the defensive prowess that Mayweather does, but he sure can handle a good fight.
This Saturday November 2nd, GGG will look to prove once again that he is a force to be reckoned with. Many fans have been suggesting that this young man has not faced quality competition, but failing to realize many fighters are avoiding him. Like Duran, GGG is a fighter by heart, a boxer-brawler whose passion to be the best is displayed in the ring. Curtis “Showtime” Stevens will look to silence the hype, the legend that has been built around boxing circles, when he steps in the squared circle with GGG.
Golovkin has mentioned that he is willing to fight at a catch weight in order to get a fight with Mayweather. A fight what will prove to be an all time great. Yes! The money may not be right at this time, but soon there will be no excuses. This young man will demonstrate to the world that he is hall of fame material and future #1 Pound-for-Pound fighter. Boxing fans will soon clamor and demand this possible epic battle. Then and just then will both fighters find the meaning of legendary.