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Golovkin V Ward: Money No excuse!!

golovkin0013By B.G.B: The attention of the boxing world has indeed spun towards WBA middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (30-0, 27 KOs) after witnessing his 18th straight KO last Saturday night in his 3rd round knockout victory over Daniel Geale (30-3, 6 KOs) at Madison Square Garden in New York.

Despite having steadily improved his opposition quality it appears that GGG is simply far beyond the level he’s currently competed at which is no disrespect to his opponents and is not intended to discredit his victories.

They have been spectacular victories to say the least. Why else would there be so many articles on this website concerning him? He has excellent boxing skills and possesses hands of stone. You’re guaranteed excellent viewing whether you’re a die-hard fan or not. Simply put, I think everyone is overwhelmingly excited at what the future holds for GGG and rightly so. But what does the future hold for GGG?

Golovkin has now smashed his way through (marginally) world level opposition so convincingly that his next bout will be his most significant fight of his career to date. Fans believe the hype. They believe in the power. They believe in Golovkin so much so that there is already (uneducated I must say) talk of him being the GOAT. A bold statement and far too early claimed. However I do not doubt that Golovkin can achieve great things as his career progresses. So why not start with Andre Ward?

Andre Ward, perhaps the best middleweight in the world has proven that there is no super middleweight that even comes close to him. He’s dominated Kessler, Bika, Abraham and the ever improving Carl Froch. He is undefeated at this point in his career and has never really struggled in a professional fight. He is an Olympic Gold medalist with tremendous ring craft and a high boxing IQ. However he has two faults. 1: He is inactive. 2: He fails to excite (casual) fans. It seems that like Golovkin, Ward is on the verge of great things but has not quite been able to reach stardom. At this stage in his career, Ward needs to take risks.

Both fighters are arguably the two most unwanted bouts in boxing today with the exception of Rigondeaux. None of the elite middleweights seem to want to take a chance with either fighter in their respected weight class. Cotto, Alvarez or Martinez has shown zero interest in a fight with Golovkin. Carl Froch has shown zero interest in a rematch with Andre Ward, unless of course it takes place in Nottingham which in my view is understandable. The fights that both fighters need to reach the next level have not been offered to either. The one major factor is simple. Neither fighter guarantees a big enough pay check for the elite. Sad this may be but it is pointless to argue. The elite level fighters will not be willing to take on such ruthless and dominant opponents unless the price is right. It may not be right for those fighters mentioned (alongside others) above, but Golovkin Vs Ward makes perfect sense.

Both fighters are looking for a pay check that 95% of boxing fans/ordinary people can only dream of. The big bucks and PPV it seems are and always will be the driving force of major fights. But is a fight between Ward and Golovkin not likely to make big bucks? Maybe not to Mayweather (and other big money fighters) but Mayweather makes over $50m a fight. Of course a fight between GGG and Ward will never make that kind of money at this stage but is that really an issue here? Both fighters are craving stardom, a stardom that very few fighters ever achieve. A fight between the pair would be career high pay days for both, with each fighter breaking $1, 000000. It may not go beyond that but I’m willing to guess it would do. GGG made $750 000 for his last fight with Daniel Geale, an Australian man who is much less recognized than Ward. The promotion of this fight is not an issue: Two undefeated world champions who seem impossible to beat. There is the selling point. Who wouldn’t pay to see this fight? Regardless of the PPV sales, this is a truly engaging fight that is a complete 50/50 split.

Forget Cotto v GGG. Ward v Golovkin is by far the more intriguing fight of the two. Assessing Golovkin’s attributes in comparison to Cotto, and I truly believe Golovkin will KO Cotto within 2 rounds. He’s far too strong and powerful and I, wrongly may I be, give Cotto zero chance of winning. He’s there to be hit and likes to engage. He will not push Golovkin back and will suffer a painful and humiliating defeat that will damage is reputation and career. Here I have identified what I feel is Golovkin’s secret weapon: his strength. Its credit to his training program and determination to strive for better that has resulted in such strength. He pushes opponents back so easily and keeps them back with his devastating power. Cotto will become a human punching bag that will succumb to a vicious and bloody beat down. Ward however is a completely different opponent.

Andre Ward would pose a challenge in speed, footwork, ring craft and what I feel is the most essential aspect in fighting GGG: strength. Ward is as strong as an ox on the inside and is never pushed back. He moves as well as anybody but when he chooses to engage he pushes opponents back. He is the naturally bigger man and would not be maneuvered around the ring so easily. But you cannot deny the power that Golovkin has. Could he knock Ward out at 168? Yes. Can he do it easily? Absolutely not. Likewise, could Ward push Golovkin back? Yes. Can he do it easily? Absolutely not. This is what makes this match up so intriguing. I don’t want to see GGG move down and bully his way through lower divisions just to make PPV. I want to see him move up, where greater challenges for him as a professional boxer lie ahead.

For the fighters the money makes sense. Both would earn a career high pay day and the victor would be catapulted straight to the big time; the big bucks; the PPV status. Everything would be at stake for both; a true battle of two champions. The ones it doesn’t suit are the promoters. The greedy promoters who won’t settle for $1,000,000, not $2,000,000 maybe not even $3,000,000. It’s the same old story. If it doesn’t suit the promoters the fights won’t happen. They are the bankers of the sports world and will take away the fans voice for their own gain. Tom Loeffler’s recent statement disregarded Ward as an opponent, claiming they are looking for PPV. The money is no excuse. This is the best fight out there right now and yes even better than Mayweather Pacquiao. Will we see it soon? Don’t count on it.

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