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Gennady Golovkin vs. Kamil Szeremeta to headline on DAZN on April 11 in Chicago or Kazakhstan

Gennady Golovkin

By Dean Berman: IBF middleweight champion Gennadiy ‘GGG’ Golovkin will make his mandatory title defense against Kamil Szeremeta in the headliner fight on April 11 in either Chicago or Kazakhstan. [@MikeCoppinger].


Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing had previously mentioned the GGG will be fighting on April 11 in taking care of his IBF mandatory Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KOs) and it looks like he’s going to do that. This is a fight that would be much better designed to take place in GGG’s native Kazakhstan rather than the U.S, as there’s zero interest from fans in seeing him fight the obscure Polish fighter Szeremeta.

Szeremeta not well known by U.S fans

Some hardcore boxing fans know who Szeremeta, but he’s not someone that is talked about. He’s in the same league as Golovkin’s opponent Steve Rolls from last year. People weren’t familiar with Rolls, but Golovkin fought him anyway and destroy him in 4 rounds last June.

You have to wonder if the huge contract that DAZN gave Golovkin is turning around to haunt the streaming giant. Thus far, he’s fought little known 36-year-old Rolls, Sergiy Derevyanchenko in a fight that many think he lost last October, and now he’s facing Szeremeta. When Golovkin signed with DAZN, it was thought that he would fight the very best. Unfortunately, that’s not happened.

Granted, the Derevyanchenko fight turned out to be an excellent one for Golovkin, but it took him long enough to make it. He was supposed to fight Derevyanchenko in 2018, and it cost him the IBF belt when he failed to take that fight.

GGG needs to consider vacating IBF title

If Golovkin is going to use his IBF title as justification for him being able to take a soft opponents that U.S fans have never heard of, he might as well do DAZN a big favor by vacating the belt. Without the anchor of the IBF strap weighing Golovkin down, he’ll be free to go after the meaningful fights that will help both DAZN and himself in terms gaining the attention from the U.S fans.

Golovkin would be doing DAZN a tremendous favor by vacating his IBF title, so that they could get value for the money that they’re paying him. Without that belt, Golovkin can go after WBC champion Jermall Charlo, WBO champion Demetrius Andrade, Callum Smith, David Benavidez, Caleb Plant, Dmitry Bivol or face Derevyanchenko in a rematch.

If Golovkin believes he needs the IBF title in order to get a third fight with Canelo, he’s kidding himself. He doesn’t need the IBF belt to get that third fight. Canelo will give him the third fight because the fans and DAZN want it. Golovkin doesn’t need to hold onto a worthless strap that forces him to fight mediocre opposition in mandated defenses.

Fans want to see Golovkin fight quality opposition

The American fans are picky. They don’t like to see the top guys face soft jobs repeatedly in milking their titles, and fighting on DAZN against no names.

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Golovkin has only had 4 good fights during his 14-year pro career, and those were against these guys:

  • Canelo Alvarez x 2
  • Daniel Jacobs
  • Sergiy Derevyanchenko

Those are by far the best opponents that Golovkin has fought in his long career.

Here are the B-level guys that GGG has fought:

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  • Kell Brook
  • David Lemieux
  • Kassim Ouma
  • Willie Monroe Jr.
  • Vanes Martirosyan
  • Willie Monroe
  • Curtis Stevens
  • Martin Murray
  • Grzegorz Proksa
  • Gabriel Rosado
  • Daniel Geale
  • Marco Antonio Rubio

The rest of the fighters that Golovkin has fought during his career have been C and D-level guys, who weren’t very good and lacked the talent to give him a fight.

The idea of Golovkin fighting Szeremeta in Chicago is based on the idea that a lot of Polish boxing fans might turn out to see the fight. Hearn wants to place the cruiserweight fight between Polish fighter Krzysztof Glowacki and Lawrence Okolie on the same Golovkin-Szeremeta card on April 11. They’ll be fighting for the vacant World Boxing Organization cruiserweight belt.

Golovkin didn’t have to fight Szeremeta yet

Even though the International Boxing Federation hadn’t ordered GGG to face Szeremeta, he and his promoters reportedly wanted to get it out of the way early. This way it frees GGG up for a big fight later this year. However, IBF title 160 isn’t necessary for him to get a big fight against Canelo Alvarez, and it won’t help in any way get fights against WBO champ Demetrius Andrade and WBC champ Jermall Charlo.

Those are all fights that can happen for GGG whether he has a title or not. In other words, Golovkin is at the point of his career where he doesn’t need a world title for him to get big fights. You can argue having the IBF title is an excuse for GGG to take a soft fight that hasn’t been ordered by the IBF against the light hitting Szeremeta.

“Sources: Gennadiy Golovkin’s mandated middleweight title defense vs. Kamil Szeremeta will headline a DAZN show on April 11, with both Chicago and a homecoming fight in Kazakhstan under consideration. GGG won the 160-pound title against Sergiy Derevyanchenko in October,” said @MikeCoppinger.

Golovkin had a chance to fight Andre Ward many years ago, but didn’t take that fight. It’s too bad that he didn’t. To be a great fighter, Golovkin needs the good names, and he only 3 on his resume.

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