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Pacquiao doesn’t rule out Golovkin bout at 154

Gennady Golovkin Manny Pacquiao

By Chris Williams: Manny Pacquiao has no interest at all in moving up to 160 to challenge Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin, but he’s not saying no to meeting him at 154. Pacquiao says it’s too much weight for him to move up from 147 to 160 to take on Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs) for his IBF belt middleweight belt.

Pacquiao didn’t entirely rule out a fight with GGG if he were willing to come down to 154 to make it happen. When asked about 154, Pacquiao wouldn’t rule it out, but he said there are no negotiations.

In the past, Golovkin said he would only come down to 154 for a big fight against someone like Floyd Mayweather Jr. Of course, that was before Golovkin signed an eight-figure deal with DAZN, and before he’d made big money facing Canelo Alvarez twice.

Golovkin doesn’t need money

With the money that Golovkin has now, it would be interesting to see if he’d be willing to lose six pounds to come down to 154 to fight the boxing legend Pacquiao.

If Golovkin refuses, then you have to believe he’s very content with the massive money he’s made in his career, and not hungry for more.

A younger Golovkin would likely have jumped at the chance to earn millions fighting Pacquiao, but not anymore. It would be surprising if GGG agreed to come down to 154 to face Manny because he could end up like Oscar De La Hoya in being too weak to put up a fight against Pacquiao.

Gennady Golovkin Manny Pacquiao

“As long as it is 147 lbs, I am okay with that. But if it’s above that, it’s too big for me),” Pacquiao said to The Manila Times this week.

“No more. I am okay with Margarito. I did not really have a hard time then, but he was too big),” said Pacquiao.

Margarito looked weight drained for the Pacquiao fight, and he wasn’t the same guy that had beaten Miguel Cotto. Of course, De La Hoya wasn’t the same fighter either when he lost to Pacquiao in 2008 at the age of 34.

De La Hoya came down from middleweight to take on Pacquiao at 147, and he wasn’t able to lose all the weight without draining himself poorly in the process.

No one believed De La Hoya

After the fight, De La Hoya tried to explain why he lost the contest, but the boxing public didn’t buy his story. They don’t know what it’s like for a fighter to lose a tremendous amount of weight to fight in a division well below their body size.

De La Hoya’s loss sent him sputtering into retirement, which he never emerged from afterward. Oscar reacted wrongly to his failure to Pacquiao, and he just gave up on himself.

Even if Golovkin did agree to come down to 154 to face Manny, who’s to say that Team Pacquiao doesn’t move the goalposts by insisting that GGG come down to 150 or to 147, that’s not the end of the potential games that could be in store for Golovkin.

It would be bad for Pacquiao to ask for an additional strength-draining catchweight and rehydration clause on top of asking Golovkin to come down to junior middleweight to fight him.

To get credit for beating Golovkin, Pacquiao shouldn’t ask him to put himself in a position where he’s physically ill and barely able to stay upright due to the weight loss and the absence of fluids.

Gennady Golovkin Manny Pacquiao

The casual boxing fans wouldn’t know about those tricks, but the hardcore fans would hear about it, and they would let Pacquiao have it.

Would GGG need to agree to a catchweight and rehydration clause?

If Pacquiao’s management inserts a rehydration clause in the contract that limits how much weight Golovkin can gain back after the weigh-in, he could look like a zombie on the night of the fight. Pacquiao would then dominate Golovkin and get credit or beating him.

The fans would have no idea that Golovkin had boiled own to 154, 150 or 147, and then had to deal with a rehydration limit on top of that. It’s endless some of the games the A-side fighters can use to get a significant advantage over their opponents.

Golovkin would likely refuse any of those tricks, and the negotiations would very likely stall out without producing a fight. In the old days, fighters didn’t use catch weights and rehydration clauses to game the system to beat bigger and or more talented opponents than themselves, but things are different nowadays.

The average would take a fight with Pacquiao in a second if they had the opportunity to make millions fighting him, but Golovkin is different. He’s already made his fortune, and he’s going to make plenty more facing Canelo Alvarez in a trilogy match next May.

Whatever chance Pacquiao would have had to fight GGG at 154 are likely long past now that he’s made massive money from the fights against Alvarez and his contract with DAZN.

Gennady Golovkin Manny Pacquiao

Golovkin has the power to hurt Manny

When Pacquiao took on the 5’11” Antonio Margarito at 150-pounds in 2010, that was as high as he wanted to go. Although Margarito was tall, he didn’t have the power that Golovkin possesses, so Pacquiao was able to beat him by a one-sided 12 round decision.

Manny was hurt once in the fight from a body shot, but he was able to ride it out to get the win. Margarito was too slow on his feet to get to Pacquiao with his shots, and he did a poor job of letting his hands go when the Filipino star was without punching range.

It makes sense for Pacquiao not to want to take a fight against the much bigger Golovkin, who is one of the hardest punchers in the 160lb division. Golovkin, 5’10 1/2″ is a little bit shorter than Margarito, but his power is far better, and he’s as relentless.

Pacquiao had his hands full in his last contest in beating former WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman by a 12 round split decision last July in Las Vegas, Nevada. That fight showed the ceiling for Pacquiao, who had to battle hard to get the win over the inactive Thurman.

Pacquiao sounding undecided

“154? Hmmm. It depends I guess, but there’s no negotiation [between us and the Golovkin camp],” said Pacquiao.

Golovkin would likely be weight drained if he came down to 154 to fight Manny, and it’s questionable whether he could do.

Gennady Golovkin Manny Pacquiao

For the last three years, Golovkin has looked worn out during the week of his fights with him losing water weight. If it’s that hard for Golovkin to make 160, then making 154 might be a bridge too far fr him now.

Earlier in Golovkin’s career, it wouldn’t have been a big deal for him to make the 154-lb limit because he was a small middleweight. But he’s gotten older; it’s become difficult for him to drop the weight.

We’re probably not going to see Pacquiao return to the ring in 2020 to fight because he’s dealing with the pandemic in his home country of the Philippines.

It’s a time where if Pacquiao left the country right now, his opponents might take advantage of his absence to criticize him for making money while people suffer.

One way around that would be for Pacquiao to donate his earnings to the hospitals and or the people suffering. The question is, would Pacquiao be willing to give away his entire purse for the GGG fight to help his countryman?


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