Gennady Golovkin vs. Willie Monroe Jr. next Saturday on HBO
By Allan Fox: In what could be the toughest fight of WBA middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin’s career will be taking place next Saturday on May 16th against #2 WBA Willie Monroe Jr. (19-1, 6 KOs) at the Forum in Inglewood, California. Golovkin’s interim WBC 160 pound title won’t be up for grabs in the fight due to Monroe choosing not to agree to the 30-day WBC mandated weigh-in that they’d asked for.
Of all the fighters that Golovkin (32-0, 29 KOs) has faced during his pro career, this is the toughest for him. It’s not because Monroe Jr. is a big puncher or an aggressive fighter, but rather than because of his slick style of fighting and his southpaw stance.
Monroe doesn’t stay still long enough for his opponents to land more than one shot at a time against him, and even then it’s not a punch that his opponents can get a lot of power on due to the movement that Monroe is presenting. Monroe also has fast hands, and is good at throwing fast combinations against his unsuspecting opposition. When his opponents do throw their shots, Monroe is good at countering them quickly. Having long arms is also an added advantage that Monroe Jr. will have in this fight. He has the ability to keep the action on the outside.
“Well, fortunately we have a real professional in Gennady Golovkin in the gym, so the questions about anybody else are only on these types of calls,” Golovkin’s trainer Abel Sanchez. “In the gym, he’s solely focused on Willie Monroe. Willie Monroe’s going to be a tough challenge, and we’re not overlooking him by any means because if we take a stumble here, all those other names are mute.”
There’s a very good chance that even if Golovkin wins the fight, he’s going to wind up looking really bad with the way that he’s going to have to struggle to get the victory. Golovkin has problems in his last fight in trying to catch up to the fleet of foot Martin Murray.
Golovkin was able to finally halt Murray in the 11th round, but he clearly wouldn’t have been able to hurt him if Murray didn’t slow down in the later rounds. Monroe is a much better mover than Murray, and he’s not going to tire out the way that the British fighter did.
This means that Golovkin’s knockout streak is surely going to end with this fight because he’s not going to be able to KO a mobile fighter like Monroe. That’s not going to happen because Monroe won’t be a stationary fighter like Golovkin’s past opponents have done.
Monroe made his last opponent Brian Vera look really bad in winning a one-sided 10 round unanimous decision over him. Vera had good power, but he had no way of landing any of his big shots because the only time that Monroe gave him an opportunity to throw his punches was when he would intentionally stop against the ropes. Monroe didn’t have to do this. He could have kept moving and jabbing all night long, but he purposefully would lure Vera in so that he could counter him.
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