By: Hans Themistode
The aura invincibility is difficult to place back on once it has been removed. So when IBF middleweight belt holder Gennadiy Golovkin looked not only vulnerable but downright beatable in his last ring outing against perennial contender Sergiy Derevyanchenko in early October last year, the writing of his demise appeared to be on the wall.
Yet, with so much time passing from his last contest, it has been out of sight and out of mind. Golovkin’s pedestrian performance against Derevyanchenko is now a distant memory. Now, in just a few more hours, he’ll receive a chance to place even more distance between himself and his subpar outing.
In the main event slot at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida, 38-year-old Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs) will take on IBF mandatory challenger Kamil Szeremeta (21-0, 5 KOs). For the previously mentioned Szeremeta, Golovkin will represent the toughest challenge of his career by far.
There is plenty of the line for both men coming into this one. For Szeremeta, legitimacy is what he aims for. As a relative unknown, the Polish native finds himself being overlooked in the eyes of boxing fans. With no wins against any former champions, or, at the very least, someone in the top five of the division, Szeremeta has been given a long shot by oddsmakers at 25-1 to pull off the monumental upset.
For what it’s worth, Szeremeta has barely lost a round during the course of his eight-year career. During the build-up of his contest with Golovkin, the 31-year-old has appeared as confident as ever. But while it may sound good, the chances of him leaving the ring tonight with Golovkin’s world title are slim to none.
With most boxers, every contest is viewed as the same. The focus and meticulous attention to detail that is placed into one opponent, is the same across the entirety of their career. In this case however, Golovkin can’t escape the magnitude of this event.
With a win over Szeremeta, Golovkin would stand alone in boxing history with the most middleweight title defenses with 21. Opportunities such as these don’t come every day and don’t expect Golovkin to waste his.
Official Pick: Gennadiy Golovkin
This one won’t be particularly close. Szeremeta, to his credit, is a good boxer. But with little to no power, expect Golovkin to walk right through his man. He’ll get tagged here and there, but for the most part, it’ll be all Golovkin.
Try not to blink cause this won’t last very long.