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Golovkin battles Szeremeta on June 6 in Inglewood, CA

Gennady Golovkin

By Barry Holbrook: Gennadiy Golovkin is scheduled to fight in three months from now in defending his IBF 160lb title against Kamil Szeremeta. It’s a fight that has no demand from fans, but it’s one that he Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs) will take anyway because it’s a requirement due to Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KOs) being the mandatory with the IBF.

Golovkin is getting cover in taking this arguably easy fight against Szeremeta because of the mandatory situation. Fans see this fight as a sign that GGG is retreating from taking on tough opposition after struggling in his matches against these fighters:

  • Sergiy Derevyanchenko
  • Canelo Alvarez x 2
  • Daniel Jacobs

Golovkin returning to the West Coast

Gennadiy vs. Kamil Szeremeta will be taking place at The Forum in Inglewood, California. For this fight, GGG is switching coasts. His last two fights had been at Madison Square Garden in New York. After bad showing in beating Sergiy Derevyanchenko by a 12 round unanimous decision to win the vacant IBF 160lb title on October 5, he’s chosen to fight on the West Coast. Golovkin was pretty much booed out of MSG after the results were announced.

To say that GGG was booed a lot is an understatement. The fans showered Golovkin with boos until he left the ring.

When you get that treatment from boxing fans, you can do one of two things. You can give the fighter that you beat by a controversial decision a rematch to show the fans that you want to clear up the controversy or you retreat to the opposite coast and fight a soft opponent.

Golovkin has opted to do the latter, and that is a huge mistake. That move by GGG shows you where his self-confidence is at right now. He should have given Derevyanchenko a rematch, even if it cost him his IBF title.

GGG doesn’t need IBF belt to get Canelo fight

If GGG believes he needs the IBF title in order to get the third fight with Canelo Alvarez, he’s deceiving himself. Canelo will give Golovkin the trilogy fight because he has to.

DAZN wants Alvarez to fight GGG again, so Golovkin doesn’t need the IBF belt. By vacating the belt, Golovkin could then do the right thing by fighting Derevyanchenko, and not having to worry about being stripped of his IBF belt for not facing Szeremeta.

Losing the IBF belt would be the best move Golovkin could make, as he could then schedule a fight against an opponent that boxing fans want to see him fight.

These would be fine potential opponents for Golovkin:

  • Sergey Derevyanchenko
  • Danny Jacobs
  • Jermall Charlo
  • Callum Smith
  • David Benavidez
  • Dmitry Bivol
  • Caleb Plant
  • Artur Beterbiev
  • Jermell Charlo

Golovkin would gain more attention and respect from people by fighting one of those fighters than he would in defending against Szeremeta. But again, Golovkin’s self-confidence appears to be gone. A win over one of those fighters would make his trilogy fight with Canelo a lot bigger.

Golovkin, 37, has given up high altitude mountain training at Big Bear, Calfornia, and he had started training at the SNAC facility in San Carlos, California. He suffered a calf injury that caused a delay in him getting back in the ring.


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