Unbeaten knockout artist Gennady Golovkin (37-0 with 33 KOs) beat over the weekend Daniel Jacobs (32-2 with 29 KOs) in a fight that somehow exposed the Kazakh fighter’s weaknesses.
With the win, Golovkin added the World Boxing Association middle weight (160 pounds) title to his WBA super world middleweight title and World Boxing Council and International Boxing Federation (IBF) world middleweight titles.
It is quite confusing that the WBA has a “regular” world middleweight title holder and a “super” middleweight champion, because having two world title holders in the same weight with the other one being “super” means the “regular” is inferior. That would be nice to discuss in another column.
The scorecards of the Golovkin-Jacobs were rather close although all were in favor of the Kazakh fighter.
The records of both fighters showed they had dynamite in both fists and perhaps, many fans were expecting the bout to end in a stoppage or knockout.
Although the fight ended with Golovkin raising his hands in victory, some of his weaknesses were exposed. This is not a good development because before Golovkin’s fight against Jacobs, IBF world welterweight (147 pounds) champion Kell Brook (36-1 2ith 25 KOs) landed hard punches on him before his opponent’s corner threw in the towel. As I have stated in my past columns about the Brook-Golovkin fight, I was expecting the middleweight champion to massacre his opponent. That did not happen.
I mean, just think about the fact that Brook jumped 13 pounds to challenge Golovkin. That was short of being suicidal.
I will not dissect much of the Golovkin-Jacobs fight but one thing was obvious; if faced with an opponent who can also punch and has an iron chin, Golovkin could not put up a splendid performance. Some boxing quarters even believe Jacobs gave too much respect to Golovkin.
Also look at how Brook survived five rounds without going down but was able to land, of all punches, some uppercuts on Golovkin. The uppercut is one of the hardest punches to land and if you are a “sucker” for that, it would indicate weaknesses in defense.
Golovkin also has very little head movement (and that makes him a sucker for an uppercut) and if faced with a good counterpuncher, he might be in for big trouble. His limited lateral movement will also make it hard for him to deal with highly mobile fighters.
In fact, my best bet to beat Golovkin is junior middleweight (154 pounds) Erislandy Lara (24-2 with 14 KOs), the lanky counterpuncher who gave Canelo Alvarez (48-1-1 with 34 KOs) his hardest fight so far.
Lara can prove to be nightmare for Golovkin given the Cuban fighter’s excellent counterpunching skills and excellent ring movement. Golovkin isn’t one of the most mobile fighters around and he does best against fighters who stand in front of him. And guess what—Lara can throw an uppercut!
At 34 years old, time may be running out for Golovkin and his showing in recent fights are no longer that impressive. Is this a consequence of taking on too many cream puffs and tomato cans? I can even say Alvarez has taken on better opposition although most of them were not legitimate middleweights.
So if you find yourself debating as to who can beat Golovkin, the names of Lara and Alvarez should be the first ones to mention.
As for Golovkin, he should make sure his next fight will result to an impressive stoppage or knockout. And please, no more tomato cans or cream puffs!
Considering Golovkin’s recent performance, it is hard to tell if he can equal the “reign of terror” of Marvelous Marvin Hagler (62-3-2 with 52 KOs). Remember that Hagler took on the best including Thomas Hearns (61-5-1 with 48 KOs) and John Mugabi (42-7-1 with 39 KOs) whose record was a scary 25-0 with 25 KOs when he fought Hagler.
Now, I wish the boxing promoters start putting together Lara-Golovkin. As soon as possible!