Gennady Golovkin Pays a Visit to Big D
This past Sunday night, the Dallas Cowboys took on one of their arch rivals in the Philadelphia Eagles. The Cowboys have been struggling with a lot of injuries since the opening game of the season when star wide receiver Dez Bryant went down, followed shortly by an injury to starting quarterback Tony Romo.
So what does owner Jerry Jones do? Well, he calls in reinforcements of course. One phone call to Tom Loeffler, Managing Director of K2 Promotions, and boom in comes Gennady Golovkin (34-0, 31 KOs) to save the day.
Now while Jones really did personally invite the champ to Dallas, and even made him a fancy personalized No. 1 jersey with “GGG“on the back, Golovkin–along with his wife, son and trainer Abel Sanchez-was there just to enjoy his first taste of American football and Texas.
While I do have love for the Cowboys, it’s a bit difficult to buy that the most feared man in boxing came down to Texas to watch the the now 2-6 team give up another loss. My guess is that the Kazakh came to the lone star state to scope out Jerry World, aka AT&T stadium, for a potential venue for his next showdown. On Monday, Tom Loeffler, Abel Sanchez and GGG met with members of the media to answer some of these questions.
We started the round table interview with some opening statements from Loeffler and they didn’t disappoint. “Well, with all of the success Gennady has had in New York and California, we feel we want to bring him now to Texas and possibly host a fight at Cowboys Stadium,” said Loeffler.
With that being said, Loeffler did mention that depending on opponents he sees a fight happening in Dallas or San Antonio. According to Loeffler, HBO has stated that since his initial appearance on the network back in 2012, Golovkin has become the fastest growing boxer as far as ratings are concerned. This of course is an impressive feat considering GGG has only been fighting in the states for three years.
On October 17, Golovkin defeated heavy-handed David Lemieux in a one-sided destruction bout, in front of a sold out crowd at Madison Square Garden. GGG became the first boxer who is non-Puerto Rican to sell out The Garden this century. The most obvious choice for Golovkin would be a showdown with Mexican star Canelo Alvarez assuming he gets passed Miguel Cotto in late November.
Golovkin vs. Canelo would pit two crowd-pleasing fighters that share a big Hispanic fan base. Lets not forget when Golovkin fought Rubio in LA how many Mexicans fans showed up to support the Kazakh. When asked about the fan base and the possible advantage Canelo might have in Texas, Golovkin smiled and responded confidently.
“For me its not a problem. I have respect for Canelo, as long as the fans are cheering at the end of the fight,” said Golovkin.
The one issue surrounding this dream matchup is the weight. Recently, Alvarez was quoted saying that he would fight Golovkin, but at 154 pounds and not 160. But, who could blame the kid, after seeing what he’s been doing to opponents at 160, why not exploit any advantage you can get? The whole discussion about catch weights seems a little played out. This writer, along with Sanchez and Golovkin feel that if you are the champion at 160 then you fight at 160, and all that A-side B-side stuff is irrelevant.
“I believe it’s up to you guys (the media) to ask these guys why they don’t want to fight us. I think before it was an issue that maybe we weren’t a big enough draw, but now that’s changed, so what’s the excuse now?,” said Sanchez.
“I’ve been quoted in the past saying that we would fight anyone from 154 to 168 if it made sense financially,” said Sanchez. “But if Canelo or Cotto want to fight at 155, being the 160 pound champion, then they should just say that they don’t want to be the Middleweight champion.”
Strong words from Sanchez, but words that completely make sense. Golovkin, a guy from Kazakhstan, Lemieux, a French Canadian and Roman Gonzalez, a Nicaraguan, were able to sell out Madison Square Garden and sell 150,000 PPV’s and Loeffler will be the first to tell you that he doesn’t see that as a bad number considering none of the fighters had ever been on PPV before.
At the end of the day, wherever GGG decides to fight, you better believe he will sell the venue out. If he fights Cotto in The Garden, they can sell out a 20,000 person venue or if Canelo takes on the challenge, it is conceivable that they could sell 70,000 at AT&T stadium.
If either scenario comes true, boxing fans can rejoice with the possibility of a great, competitive matchup.
All photos by Porfirio Barron Jr./RBRBoxing