By Sean Jones: Eddie Hearn says he wants Gennadiy Golovkin as the next opponent for unbeaten super middleweight contender Edgar Berlanga to fight following his victory over Jason Quigley last Saturday night at the Hula Theater in New York.
For Hearn to want Golovkin for Berlanga, it suggests that he thinks Edgar can win this fight. It could be a mistake for Hearn because Berlanga looked something awful against Quigley and in his previous fights against Roamer Alexis Angulo and Marcelo Esteban Coceres.
When a fighter looks poor in three consecutive fights, you have to conclude that it’s not just a bad night. There’s a lack of talent there with Berlanga that no amount of experience will change.
Hearn needs a big name to help sellout the big room at Madison Square Garden for Berlanga’s fight on DAZN, and he sees the former IBF, WBA & WBC 160-lb champion Golovkin (42-2-1, 37 KOs) as ideal for that purpose.
Berlanga, 26, needs wins over notable opposition to motivate Canelo Alvarez to fight him in 2024. Hearn is aware that Quigley (20-3, 14 KOs) was not a big enough name to get Canelo interested in fighting Berlanga, so he’s hoping the 41-year-old Golovkin might take him up on an offer to fight the New Yorker.
Hearn will have to make a sizable offer to get Golovkin in gear to take the fight because he won’t fight the massive-sized super middleweight Berlanga for chicken feed.
If Hearn throws out a $15 million offer, he could get Golovkin off his sofa to take on the unbeaten Berlanga.
Last September, Golovkin lost a winnable fight against the faded-looking Canelo by fighting passively in the first six rounds.
The fight looked like a glorified sparring match until Golovkin’s competitive spirit kicked in around midway, and he controlled the entire second half.
“Yeah, GGG is a much bigger name. It’s just whether he fights again,” said Eddie Hearn to the media at the post-fight press conference, wanting Gennadiy Golovkin to face Edgar Berlanga next.
“He punches harder [than Jaime Munguia]. I think he’s a better fighter. It’s just that he’s an older fighter. I think he’s not a prime GGG anymore, but he’s still a tremendous fighter,” said Hearn.
If Hearn waves enough money under Golovkin’s nose, he might agree to fight Berlanga to help him fill the big room at Madison Square Garden.
As the saying goes, ‘Be careful about what you wish for’ applies in this case because Golovkin is still dangerous. He’s like an unexploded ordinance you’d see in a war zone or an artillery range.
Berlanga is not an EOD specialist, and Golovkin is still far too lethal for a fighter that looked beyond ordinary against Quigley.
“I love him as a person. I would like to see Edgar in with [him]. I really like Jaime Munguia as a person, but I don’t see him as an elite guy like Gennadiy Golovkin,” said Hearn.
“For the resume and obviously the fan base, Gennadiy Golovkin has boxed in the Garden many times, but it all depends if he wants to fight again,” said Hearn.
Instead of Hearn thinking about finding an opponent that will help Berlanga fill MSG, he should focus on finding someone that can help him improve.
“I think it’s just the pressure of delivering for my people,” said Berlanga. “It’s a little tough for me right now because people are expecting something. A KO, a knockout, or a TKO, and my Puerto Rican people and from New York, they’re expecting that.
“Listen, I’m excited to be here under the promotion. I got the victory, and that’s all that matters. I ended the fight amazing, and I’ve just got to pick off from there,” said Berlanga.