By Dan Ambrose: Earlier today, IBF/WBA/WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (29-0-1, 26 KOs) announced his next fight on July 11 against Isaac Chilemba (24-3-2, 10 KOs) for Ekaterinburg, Russia.
Kovalev was asked whether he thinks IBF/IBO/WBA middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (34-0, 31 KOs) will beat WBC middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (46-1-1, 32 KOs) later this year if/when the fight happens in September, and Kovalev answered in the affirmative.
Kovalev thinks Golovkin will beat Canelo, and he can perfectly understand why Canelo seems to reluctant in taking the fight with Golovkin.
“I believe Gennady can get victory over Canelo. I understand why Canelo (is not interested),” said Kovalev.
When asked if he would ever fight Golovkin, Kovalev said that’s a “stupid question,” because the two of them are good friends.
Golovkin has a fight tonight against Dominic Wade (18-0, 12 KOs) at the Forum in Inglewood, California. A huge crowd of 17,000 fans are expected to turn out to see Golovkin face Wade, and WBC flyweight champion Roman Gonzalez (44-0, 38 KOs) put his unbeaten record on the line against #10 WBC McWilliams Arroyo (16-2, 14 KOs). It’s a nice card and it should be interesting for as long as the fight lasts.
If Golovkin wins his fight against Wade, he’ll be in position to fight the winner of Canelo’s fight against Amir Khan (31-3, 19 KOs) on May 7. The winner of the Canelo-Khan fight will have a little over two weeks to decide whether they’ll fight the winner of the Golovkin-Wade fight. Kovalev obviously understands why Canelo hasn’t been chomping at the bit to fight Golovkin. Canelo could have elected to fight Golovkin for his May 7 fight, but instead he chose to fight Khan.
Canelo hasn’t officially said that he’ll duck the Golovkin fight, but some of the things he has said would give the indication that he’s not going to take the fight against him next. Canelo is sticking with the idea that the fight would need to be at a catch-weight, and that can be seen as code for Canelo not wanting to fight him.
Canelo obviously knows that Golovkin isn’t going to drain down to fight a middleweight fight. Golovkin will only drain down in weight to fight Floyd Mayweather Jr. if he ever came out of retirement and decided that he wanted to fight him. Since it doesn’t look like Mayweather will be doing that anytime soon, we’re not going to see that fight.
The big question is when will Canelo choose to fight Golovkin? At 25, Canelo can essentially wait the 34-year-old Golovkin out until he’s an old man before fighting him. Canelo probably has a good 10 years left in his career before he’s no longer star material. He might not be the same fighter he is now when he hits his early 30s, but he’s got enough time to wait Golovkin out until he’s in his 40s and no longer has his skills. It would be sad if that’s the tactic that Canelo takes towards the fight with Golovkin, because there are a lot of boxing fans that want to see the fight now, not when Golovkin is old and gray and no longer has his teeth.