“Just because he’s a drama queen doesn’t mean I’m going to treat him like royalty.”
Gennady Golovkin, on Floyd Mayweather
“Hey.. HEY!!! Can you tell me what Triple G just said?” I’m frantically screaming to a member of GGG’s entourage after the middleweight boss walked away to laughter within his inner circle. I’d asked him about Mayweather calling him ‘easy work’ recently in Las Vegas and wanted his response to that.
“Please. This is drama for show. He knows better,” said Golovkin with a smile. “I’m not going to play ping-pong with him, this is boxing.”
At this point, he shared an exchange with a few entourage members in his native tongue that produced laughter from everyone- except him. That was then followed by the demand for translation. What didn’t need to be interpreted was the split second look of utter contempt on the face of Golovkin, as he stiff jabbed Floyd with his crew. Quietly, he can’t stand Mayweather, and won’t fall for the gamesmanship that Floyd plays with anyone- friend or foe. If you believe Golovkin trainer Abel Sanchez, Floyd is now obsessed with fighting Golovkin, and his recent remarks regarding GGG is mounting evidence.
“Well I mean you know, this guy [GGG] is just another creation by the media, somebody else being built up,” quipped Floyd, while in D.C. to witness Adrien Broner’s demolition of Ashley Theopane. “Once again, he’s straight up and down with no special effects. Easy work.” Before his most recent visit to ESPN studios in Los Angeles (to promote what became a 2nd round mugging of Dominic Wade this past weekend), Golovkin came across a Fathead-like structure of Mayweather on his way to the production room. He actually asked to pause for a picture with Floyd while placing his right hand on Floyd’s chin.
Like Manny Pacquiao before him, the two have been entwined without ever having met each other, in what was a fight that the public had to force Floyd to take. Shots were fired from afar, to create nearly $500 million dollars worth of smoke that produced absolutely no flames. PPV sales have sucked lately, and a lot of it has to do with the false prophecy of Mayweather/Pacquiao. But for Golovkin, Floyd can actually force the public to take this fight, for without being a PPV star, GGG has shown a free TV substance reminiscent of a vintage “Iron” Mike Tyson. He is becoming a superstar outside of the MGM Grand, a place where Floyd’s likeness resides on the side of the building, in a city that is quick to ask “What have you done for me lately?” almost as quickly as it will discard you into the desert wind.
Floyd Mayweather and Gennady Golovkin are two different kinds of a matrix- if you will, in that, they are things which only the rare can solve. As I watched Floyd sporting an all-black, omniscient, all-seeing eye of the Illuminati recently while entertaining thoughts of a superfight between him and Golovkin, I thought of my favorite line from the science-fiction blockbuster “The Matrix”.
It is the question that will drive him.
When Canelo Alvarez vs. Amir Khan takes place on May 7 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, it will mark the first time since 2011 that Mayweather has not fought on Cinco de Mayo, as he decided to take a long layoff from the game to recover from bouts with Juan Manuel Marquez and Shane Mosley. He was also still avoiding Manny Pacquiao around that time- but we won’t really go there. Preservation played a big role in Mayweather’s dominance, as did his mini retirement in 2007 after beating a Ricky Hatton he brought up from super lightweight, even as the welterweight division was extremely deep at the time. Mayweather has a lot of Sugar Ray Robinson and Sugar Ray Leonard in him, in that he is a cunning narcissist that is hell bent on stacking the deck against his opponent for the most gain.
Whether he’s secretly recording meetings between himself and Pacquiao after b.s.ing about Olympic testing, playing mind games with Marcos Maidana over gloves, or making Canelo emaciate himself to 152lbs, Floyd will be Floyd. But things have changed, and it won’t take long for him to really notice that. Canelo and Khan have whole entire countries behind them, a fact that will resonate at the box office. He doesn’t like to admit this, but opponents like [them] are what made him so successful, for it was their fan bases – and the hope of seeing him KO’d – that broke PPV records. He’ll watch Canelo win big in a brand new T-Mobile Arena with eyes full of green. And we ain’t talking about “Money”. He’ll watch with envy, not only because he actually used a shovel to help break ground on it, but because someone other than himself will be getting major attention in his city.
Floyd is a better athlete than the great Bernard Hopkins was, and continues to go through spartan-like training almost daily according to sources in Vegas. All his body knows is combat, so there is no way there won’t be a fight #50 for a man obsessed with ring competition. And pardon me, but I’ll speak for the public and say we don’t want to see a fight between himself and Danny “Swift” Garcia, considered the weakest among the current crop of champions at welterweight.
We want Golovkin or we ain’t paying for it- its as simple as that. Since he bestowed upon himself the moniker of “TBE”, he can really earn it by putting his 49-0 record on the line against a 35-0 GGG willing to see him at a catchweight of 154lbs. I believe it’ll happen in May 2017, and after some exhaustive film study, have a pretty firm idea of what will happen when it does.
FLOYD MAYWEATHER VS. GENNADY GOLOVKIN: A MODERN VERSION OF JULIO CESAR CHAVEZ VS. MELDRICK TAYLOR
In fact, this is probably more of a modern day Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Marvelous Marvin Hagler all day on paper. I just think it would eventually evolve into Chavez/Taylor given their make-ups. Floyd’s speed, all-world boxing ability and incredible defense against Triple G’s suffocating and methodical offensive attack. The drop in weight from 160 would affect him somewhat, and that would show up in the fight. In Mayweather, he would be dealing with a very athletic and fundamentally sound Roy Jones Jr. with elements of James Toney in his game. Floyd is just that nice, as we say in the streets.
I personally regard Mayweather as the very best defensive fighter the world has ever seen- regardless of era. Better than Robinson. Better than Leonard. Better than Ali. He is more refined and precise in his technical base than was Pernell Whitaker, and he took what Nicolino Locche did to another level. Due to a combination of genes, uncanny discipline to training and all those patented mitt sessions with his uncle Roger, Floyd has been virtually unhittable and almost impossible to hit with a combination. If you do manage to hit him cleanly, he’ll turn into a dragon– and will fire away with abandon while taking his defense into invisible overdrive. Round 2 against Mosley is a perfect example of this, when we were shocked by a fundamental error from Mayweather that nearly got him KTFO. He never made that mistake again, in what turned into one of his greatest performances. Floyd is a master of distance, rhythm and timing, and only someone truly special can crack what has been boxing’s proverbial Rubix Cube. Pacquiao was (and remains) capable of doing it, but truly GGG absolutely can.
To beat Floyd, a fighter has to understand the principles to his game and upset this balance. He has what I call the “Layer Cake”, because there’s levels to his style and his defense that he’ll use throughout a bout. That’s why its a little easier dealing with Floyd in the first couple of rounds until he has you completely figured out. You think he’s all about a shoulder roll, but then he’ll break out the roll unders, and inside and outside slips to complement a high guard defense he’ll unveil. He’ll use his right hand to parry jabs for awhile, then he’ll just start slipping them – or – he’ll go Fat Joe and “Lean Back”, while catching you with pull counter rights. Sometimes he’ll slip and come inside just to mess up cadence or rhythm. Most fighters perform in familiar patterns and afford him respect because of his speed. Hardly a KO artist, Floyd strikes fast enough to shock and cause doubt. But this wouldn’t happen with Golovkin at all, and I’ll tell you why…
The fighters who’ve given Floyd the most problems in his career have been ones who’ve fought him with absolutely no regard. Go back to Jose Luis Castillo against a very prime Mayweather at 130 and compare that to a not-so prime Mayweather against Marcos Maidana at 147 in 2014. He’s the same fighter. During those 24 rounds, Floyd experienced more duress against “Chino” than arguably anyone else, and we could clearly see why he totally avoided a relentless pressure fighter like Antonio Margarito. Had there been another 20 to 30 seconds remaining in round 3 when Maidana caught Mayweather with a short right hand that badly shook Floyd almost at the sound of the bell- he may have stopped him. That shot occurred while Floyd was punching with Chino, which is something GGG would do with Floyd all night.
In Golovkin, Floyd is dealing with a hybrid Kostya Tszyu and Julio Cesar Chavez – or – a much more talented version of Antonio Margarito or Marcos Maidana. Golovkin’s ability to mathematically turn the ring into fractions while causing claustrophobia is amazing. His subtle footwork shuts down escape routes, and his perfectly timed jab is a thudding and debilitating punch. Oscar De la hoya and Freddie Roach well knew that the key to beating Mayweather in 2007 was built around the jab- something Oscar abandoned as the fight progressed. This punch is probably the key to this fight, because against Golovkin, Floyd would not have the reach advantage he usually has every time he fights. De la hoya also wasted a lot of punches in that fight, something Golovkin does not do.
Another problem for Floyd (which showed up to a small extent against Cotto in 2012), is GGG also has an extraordinary ability to fire shots from an orthodox and a southpaw stance almost simultaneously, and is a master of varying his targets and rhythm– all while doing the same with his tempo and power of his punches. I see this as an all-world match-up between two Hall of Fame “A” fighters that would be even after six rounds until Golovkin starts really breaking Floyd down. Nothing in Floyd’s arsenal can hurt him, and as we saw in the Maidana fight (particularly the rematch) Floyd grew weary as the fight progressed because Chino just wouldn’t stop coming. Well neither would GGG, who again, is infinitely better, and finds a way to create and exploit holes in any opponents’ defense – even Floyd’s.
In an action fight for the ages and probably one of the greatest fights of all-time, Gennady Golovkin would bring out the very best in a Floyd Mayweather who would refuse to lose and win hearts in defeat, as GGG would systematically break and stop a throwback “Pretty Boy Floyd” via thrilling 11th round TKO. For more on your favorite fighter and the upcoming Canelo Alvarez vs. Amir Khan showdown at the new T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, please visit Real Combat Media.