What next for Golovkin after the draw with Canelo? You’d think the immediate rematch but there might be one fight in between.
The rematch talks are already underway for a Golovkin vs Canelo part two.
The route to match number two is far from a direct one, as was the first, and kinks in the line likely need to be ironed out which may not be completed immediately.
However, it is most likely and popular for the Kazakh champion due to the scintillating draw in the match, that many onlookers believed should’ve narrowly went to him.
Below we explore all the options to the unified middleweight titlist, either with the Mexican superstar or not.
Billy Joe Saunders, (25-0 12KO).
Saunders, 28, on the same day as Canelo-GGG, successfully defended the last of the four major sanctioning body titles currently not in Golovkin’s possession, the World Boxing Organization’s (WBO) 160-pound belt.
Saunders won a rather tediously fought bout against Willie Monroe Jr.
It was appallingly tiresome in which Monroe was fighting in a very conservative, take-no-chances approach where a defending champion easily outpoints.
A virtual night-and-day comparison considering the action Canelo-GGG had to what Saunders-Monroe did not have.
A unification bout between the two could prove a tempting alternative to Golovkin and K2 promotions, should negotiations with Alvarez and Golden Boy Promotions dive into the trenches.
Golovkin on countless occasions has expressed his desire to unify the belts to become undisputed middleweight champion.
Saunders has told media outlets that he would like to fight again as early as December against either Alvarez or Golovkin.
Jermall Charlo, (26-0 20KO)
Charlo, 27, whose twin brother Jermell remains champion in the junior middleweight division he’s left behind, is now the World Boxing Council’s (WBC) mandatory challenger to Golovkin.
Jermall defeated, what appeared to have been, an already injured Jorge Sebastian Heiland (29-5-2 16) on the Mikey Garica-Adrien Broner undercard July 29th.
Heiland, 30, was stopped after a knockdown in the fourth round in a bout where he was limping from the very beginning.
It would appear unwise at first glance for a contender that’s had only a shadow of a real middleweight fight take on the destroyer Golovkin is.
Notwithstanding, Jermall Charlo is an exceptional talent and fierce fighter himself and rust accumulates rather quickly in this sport.
It’s easy to fathom keeping the iron in the fire, discussion-wise, as long as possible unless a unification bout versus Saunders or Canelo rematch were finalized – in which the WBC would most likely grant a one fight exception and hopefully Charlo would take a stay-busy match.
Sergiy Derevychenko, (11-0 9KO)
Derevychenko stopped Bahamian Tureano Johnson (20-2 14KO) in round 12 last August in Miami, Oklahoma to become the International Boxing Federation’s (IBF) number one contender for Golovkin’s belt.
It would satisfy a mandatory and be a worthy interim bout should options for an immediate rematch be unviable, and it’s most likely an easy fight.
Derevychenko is 31 and had only 11 professional bouts, with only his last fight with Johnson,33, going past the eighth round.
While easily handling opponents and never personally threatened with defeat himself, it’s hard to imagine the Ukrainian, with no other experience in versatile contenders, going up against, who should now definitely be regarded as an elite boxer, in Golovkin.
Miguel Cotto, (41-5 33KO)
Cotto expressed his willingness to face the winner of GGG-Canelo.
He easily outpointed and nearly shutout a robust and resilient yet ultimately outclassed Yoshihiro Kamegai (27-4-2 23KO) in August for the WBO junior middleweight title.
Cotto has also repeatedly stated that he will no longer compete after 2017 and would like a meaningful finale to an already hall of fame bound career.
If Alvarez-Golovkin talks stalled out completely, Cotto could pursue either fighter as Canelo defeated Cotto via unanimous decision back in 2015 to earn The Ring Magazines’ and the lineal middleweight titles.
A defeat Cotto certainly would like to avenge.
Cotto is only a year and some change older than Golovkin and he still has the ability to compete at championship level as seen with Kamegai.
Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, (49-1-2 34KO)
Fans can complement him on his brilliant as always counterpunching and elusiveness, or detractors can deride his lack of stamina and his inability to solve Golovkin’s jab last weekend.
Notwithstanding, on paper, no one has come closer to defeating Gennady Golovkin than Canelo Alvarez.
The split draw has fight fans debating the decision out of one corner of their mouth while simultaneously insisting a rematch out of the other.
Unless we saw a mutually implausible knockout or wide decision victory, a rematch between these two top tier fighters was practically a forgone conclusion with Alverez’s rematch clause in place.
These two ran into a variety of obstacles the first time around and it doesn’t appear any different the sequel bout.
Golovkin in previous interviews has mentioned he has wanted to fight as often as possible, and also has the above bouts to consider (refusing mandatories without official exemption means the title usually vacates and the reigning champion is stripped).
While Alvarez since hasn’t fought more than two bouts in a year since 2011 and remains firmly cemented to fighting on Cinco de Mayo and Mexican Independence Day weekends.
It remains to be seen whether or not Golovkin wants to wait that long for a rematch or Alvarez will compromise on a sooner date.
An immediate rematch may not be even what both fighters agree on as a number of combinations (and let’s be honest, complications) could be considered.
Money issues, location concerns, anything could be the proverbial wrench in the gears.
Perhaps we see Interim bouts with a Canelo-Cotto rematch and a Golovkin-Saunders unification bout? Maybe it’s Golovkin defending against one of his mandatory challengers and Canelo squaring off against Saunders?
The boxing world will now do what it hates most, it waits as we wait to hear news of what next for Golovkin.