By: Sean Crose
Canelo Alvaraez may be avoiding him (perhaps out of personal disdain rather than fear), but former middleweight kingpin Gennady Golovkin has a chance to be a major titlist once more, as it’s been announced the Kazakh warrior will be facing Sergey Derevyanchenko for the IBF middleweight crown on October 5th at Madison Square Garden. “Everyone knows that I consider Madison Square Garden as my home away from home,” Golovkin says, “and there is nothing better than fighting there again. It is old school.” Although the 13-1 Derevyanchenko isn’t as well regarded as Canelo, who the 39-1-1 Golovkin fought in two highly controversial bouts, Derevyanchenko isn’t seen as an opponent to be regarded lightly, either.
“On October 5,” Golovkin says, “it’s going to be a good fight. Every time I enter the ring I try to give my fans the fight they want to see, the show they deserve. This will be such a fight. We will bring back Big Drama Show to the ring of The Garden and to DAZN (which will be airing the broadcast live). Don’t miss it. You will see everything you love in the sport of boxing. See you in New York.” Although Golovkin, who recently signed with DAZN for a ton of money, was expected to face Canelo on the streaming service, Canelo, who most feel has yet to convincingly best Golovkin, has apparently shown little interest in giving the fighter known as GGG another chance (the judges ruled their first fight a draw, and the second a Canelo win). Although Canelo-GGG III would unquestionably be lucrative, the bad blood between Canelo and Golovkin is apparently so intense that Canleo (at least for the time being) would rather forfeit millions rather than face Golovkin again. All of which leaves Derevyanchenko, who was originally supposed to face Canelo, in a position to best the feared Golovkin.
“I’m very excited that my team has secured another opportunity for me to fight for the Middleweight championship of the world,” Derevyanchenko says. “I have a great deal of respect for ‘GGG’ and am looking forward to proving in the ring that I will be up to challenge and fulfill my lifelong dream of becoming a World champion.” Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn, who is promoting the October 5th throwdown, is eager to showcase the fact Golovkin-Derevyanchenko is a high quality matchup.
“They call it the Big Drama Show,” he says, “and that’s exactly what the fans will enjoy at MSG on October 5, live on DAZN.” Hearn is also quick to bring up the fact that the fight has the makings of a high octane affair. “Gennady has a chance to regain his World Middleweight crown and Sergey will bring the fire – the styles should gel brilliantly for a brutal battle. We look forward to a fantastic event with a stacked card at the iconic Mecca of boxing.”
Golovkin last fought in June, where he predictably destroyed Steve Rolls at the Garden. Derevyancheno last fought in April, when he bested Jack Culcay by unanimous decision in Minneapolis. He previously fought for the IBF middleweight crown against Daniel Jacobs last October, where he ended up losing by split decision on the judge’s cards.