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Gennady Golovkin vs. Sergiy Derevyanchenko less than 4 weeks to go

Gennady Golovkin DAZN Golovkin vs. Derevyanchenko Matchroom Boxing USA Sergiy Derevyanchenko

By Matt Lieberman: Gennady Golovkin and Sergiy Derevyanchenko have less than 4 weeks to go before they meet up next month on DAZN on October 5 in a fight for the vacant IBF middleweight title at Madison Square Garden in New York. The two will be fighting for Saul Canelo Alvarez’s IBF belt that was stripped from him by the sanctioning body. 

On paper, there’s little chance that Derevyanchenko can win this fight. He lost recently to Daniel Jacobs, a guy that Golovkin beat in 2017, and he’s not as talented as GGG. Derevyanchenko doesn’t have fast hands, and is power isn’t anywhere near Golovkin’s level. At 5’9″, Derevyanchenko is short for a middleweight, and he likes to slug with his opponents. He couldn’t do that effectively against Jacobs, because he was facing a guy with a lot better power. Jacobs dropped Derevyanchenko in the 1st round. He dominated Derevyanchenko with his speed, and boxing ability during the remainder of the fight. If Jacobs had been more aggressive, it would have been an easier fight. Jacobs backed up too much, and that allowed Derevyanchenko win rounds that he wouldn’t have otherwise won. If Derevyanchenko fights Golovkin the same way he did Jacobs, he’ll struggle. 

Derevyanchenko getting another shot to win the IBF title

 It was only last year in October that Derevyanchenko fought for the same IBF middleweight belt, and lost to Daniel Jacobs. Now the IBF has made Derevyanchenko their mandatory again, and he’s getting another shot. It’s possible for fighters to work themselves back into position. Derevyanchenko seems to have worked the IBF system a lot faster than normal fighters though. Usually when a mandatory gets beaten, it takes a couple of years to get another title shot. In Derevyanchenko’s case, it only took him six months to become the IBF mandatory for the second time. In Derevyanchenko’s first fight after losing to Jacobs in a failed bid to capture the IBF title last October, he was right back fighting in an IBF eliminator six months later against Jack Culcay in April of this year.

This is going to get interesting if Derevyanchenko loses to Golovkin, and immediately is in another title eliminator with the IBF six months later. What happened to the other contenders in the IBF’s rankings? Derevyanchenko is a good fighter, but it looks strange that he’s immediately back in another eliminator with the same sanctioning body following a loss to Jacobs. It was an incredibly quick turnaround. It would have been nice to have some new blood fighting in an IBF eliminator instead of the same guy that just lost. 

Golovkin vs. Derevyanchenko undercard incomplete

With less than a month to go before October 5th, the undercard for the Golovkin-Derevyanchenko fight is less than stellar. It’s unclear what the hold up is with Matchroom Boxing USA and GGG Promotions, because the only two fights on the undercard thus far are these two:

  • Ivan Baranchyk vs. Gabriel Bracero
  • Joseph Ward vs. TBA

That’s it as far as the undercard goes for the October 5th card. Golovkin recently signed with Matchroom promoter Hearn, and it was thought that the two would put their own fighters on his undercards. If this as good as it gets for Golovkin’s undercard next month, it might be a harbinger of bad things to come.  With the skeleton undercard for the Golovkin-Derevyanchenko card, it’s possible that Matchroom and GGG Promotions believe that the main event will be enough to attract fans to order it on DAZN, and purchase tickets to see it live at Madison Square Garden. Hopefully that’s not going to be the case, but that’s what promoters sometimes do when they have a popular fighter in the main event.

Instead of stacking the undercard, some promoters do it on the cheap and throw unknowns on the card. One big example of that was Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao undercard in 2015. The promoters for that event put mismatches on the undercard, and didn’t bother putting together a good undercard. The only notable name on the undercard for the Mayweather-Pacquiao event was Vasiliy Lomachenko, and he was matched up against Gamalier Rodriguez in a non-compelling fight. Lomachenko stopped Rodriguez in the 9th round. Rodriguez hasn’t fought since 2015.

GGG must fight better than he did against Steve Rolls

For Golovkin to win this fight, he’s got to be aggressive from the start against Derevyanchenko. This is someone that will be looking to outsmart Golovkin, and win a decision. It’s doubtful that Derevyanchenko is thinking about trying to knock GGG out. It’s more likely he wants to work his way to a decision win, and Golovkin will help him do that if he doesn’t let his hands go. GGG’s new trainer Johnathon Banks has repeatedly said that he wants him to increase his punch volume, because he views that as his major flaw. Golovkin doesn’t throw enough punches, and he mainly looks for one shot. That style is no longer working well for Golovkin now that he’s fighting younger lions like Canelo Alvarez, and it’s something he’s gotta change. Banks may not be able to help Golovkin if he can’t get him to let his hands go. 

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