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Gennady Golovkin vs. Yamaguchi Falcao possible for May 5

Image: Gennady Golovkin vs. Yamaguchi Falcao possible for May 5

By Dan Ambrose: Gary ‘Spike’ O’Sullivan will not be fighting middleweight champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin on May 5th, but there’s now a possibility that southpaw 2012 Brazilian Olympian Yamaguchi Falcao (15-0, 7 KOs) is an option for the Kazakhstan fighter on HBO at the StubHub Center in Carson, California.

According to Lance Pugmire, O’Sullivan will NOT be fighting Golovkin on May 5th due to it being on “short notice” and “Short money.” The 33-year-old O’Sullivan (27-2, 19 KOs) will instead be fighting on ESPN against an opponent still to be determined on May 4. For the boxing fans that enjoy watching the Irish native O’Sullivan fight, they can watch him on ESPN on May 4th.

It’s interesting that May 5th was “short notice” for O’Sullivan, and yet he’s fighting on May 4th. When they’re going to give excuses for not fighting Golovkin, they need to come up with something better than that excuse. O’Sullivan is obviously going to take on a much lesser opponent for his May 4th fight than he would have if he had fought GGG on the 5th of May. O’Sullivan is a Golden Boy fighter, so it’s not surprising that they would keep him from fighting Golovkin on May 5.

Golovkin is taking the Cinco de Mayo date that their fighter Canelo Alvarez has been camping at. If Golovkin takes that date, he has the potential of picking up a lot of new Mexican boxing fans due to it being the Cinco de Mayo holiday. By yanking O’Sullivan out of the Golovkin fight, you can argue that Golden Boy is increasing the chances that GGG will need to give up the date due to his management being unable to find a good enough replacement to make the California Commission and the sanctioning bodies happy.

Falcao, 30, is ranked #13 WBA and #13 WBC. He’s been a pro for four years since 2014, but he’s not been matched against good opposition unfortunately. For an Olympian, Falcao has been matched too carefully by his promoters. He should have fought better opposition right off the bat instead of being put in with weaker opponents.

In Falcao’s last 10 fights, he’s beaten these fighters:

• Richard Gutierrez

• Taronze Washington

• Morgan Fitch

• German Perez

• Devis Caceres

• Jorge Daniel Caraballo

• Francisco Cordero

• Gustavo Albero Sanchez

• Jose Carlos Perez

• Gerardo Ibarro

Golden Boy offering up one of their inexperienced fighters in Falcao could make it difficult for Golovkin to have him approved by the California State Athletic Commission and the IBF, WBA and WBC sanctioning bodies. The sanctioning bodies have already turned down Vanes Martirosyan as an opponent for Golovkin to fight on May 5, although the California Commission has approved him. The Nevada Commission rejected unbeaten junior middleweight Jaime Munguia as Golovkin’s replacement opponent as well. Munguia had never fought a contender before during his short career.

Falcao is in the same boat at Munguia. He’s never fought a contender in his four-year pro career. If Munguia was deemed unsuitable to fight for a world title, then it’s likely that Falcao will be turned down as well. This could work out in Golden Boy’s favor if Golovkin’s opponents keep getting shot down as being unsuitable, because he could wind up missing out on his May 5th date. Of course, Golovkin could make it easy on the California Commission and the International Boxing Federation if he and his promoter Tom Loeffler would agree on taking the fight with IBF mandatory Sergiy Derevyanchenko on May 5. That’s a fight that would be given the green light right away by the IBF and California Commission, as the unbeaten Derevyanchenko (12-0, 10 KOs) is a 2012 Olympian from Ukraine, and he defeated Tureano Johnson last year to become GGG’s IBF mandatory challenger. Loeffler isn’t eager to make the Golovkin vs. Derevyanchenko fight.

Team Golovkin will take a lot of criticism from the boxing public if they sign the southpaw Falcao as his May 5th opponent, because the excuse for GGG not to fight the unbeaten former WBA/WBO junior middleweight champion Demetrius Andrade is he’s a southpaw. If Golovkin turns around and faces Falcao, it’s going to look like they ducked Andrade in favor of an easier option.

If Golovkin misses out on his May 5th date, then he likely won’t fight until June or July. The reason that’s not a good thing is because Golovkin will have a short turn around if Golden Boy fighter Saul Canelo Alvarez is ready to fight him in a rematch this September. Golovkin would need to go from a June or July fight, which might be against someone good, to fight Canelo. It puts Canelo in an advantageous position of getting a slightly depleted Golovkin instead of a well-rested Golovkin.

If Golovkin is forced to fight a really good opponent on May 5th like Derevyanchenko or Andrade, he’s going to likely take a lot of punishment against both of those guys. That helps Canelo, because he won’t get a fresh Golovkin when they face each other later this year. With Canelo, he needs all the help he can get, because who knows what kind of condition he’ll be in when he faces Golovkin in September. If Canelo’s physique is no longer muscled and if he’s lost his power, he’s going to be in trouble against Golovkin. Canelo looked like a bulldog last September. He was so much bigger than he’d been before, and he still appeared to lose the fight to Golovkin by 4 rounds. If Canelo loses those muscles, then he’ll be back to the fighter that struggled to defeat Liam Smith and had problems against Amir Khan. That version of Canelo is likely going to be stomped by Golovkin. The only way Canelo beats Golovkin now is if he’s forced to take on a tough opponent on May 5th like Derevyanchenko or Andrade, and he winds up getting hit a lot. Canelo is going to be completely rested by the time he aces Golovkin later this year. It’s good for Canelo. Golovkin will be 1-year older since their previous fight, and he might be worn down. It works on Canelo’s favor for Golovkin to have to either miss the May 5th date or get stuck facing someone talented that could wear him down enough to where he’s not quite as good afterwards.

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