By Scoop Malinowski
Gennady Golovkin is the most exciting and buzzed about superstar in the sport of boxing right now. His precisely ruthless violent knockout style is awe-inspiring because of the consistent way it destroys any and every man standing in his path. With his unstoppable and unbeatable wrecking machine way of fighting, Golovkin is one of the greatest and mysterious sensations the sport has ever seen. But as spectacular as Golovkin has been selling out arenas all over the globe, he is only earning minimal purses. $5 million for beating Kell Brook. $2 million for knocking out Dominic Wade and David Lemieux. $1. 5 for stopping Willie Monroe. These are disappointing figures for a fighter who has steadily been far more exciting and electrifying than Floyd Mayweather ever was in any fight. By excitement factor standards alone, Golovkin deserves to earn more than Mayweather, who once had a contract that guaranteed him $30 million a fight for six fights. The question looms: Why is Golovkin paid so little in comparison?
One reason is Golovkin has not had the luck to be able to fight and beat the biggest name star fighters. Mayweather was fortunate that he was able to get his first PPV fight with popular Arturo Gatti. Then the next big break was the Oscar De La Hoya fight. Golovkin deserved to fight the big names of his era in Sergio Martinez, Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather (at 154) and Canelo Alvarez but all four opted to duck Golovkin. These four ducks have limited Golovkin’s star power and, of course, his earning power. Golovkin has proceeded onward and beaten all the available contenders who have bravely stepped up. He’s done it in sensational and spectacular fashion every time he’s stepped in the ring. It runs in your menu bar using a tiny amount of your cpu and only about 70mb of ram… His knockout ratio is among the best in history. He has charisma, personality and the best smile in all sports. But that one big mega super fight has continued to elude him. Super fights are how super stars are born. You beat the best and the world sees it and looks at the triumph in awe. The public clamors for more and more chances to see the big star and willingly pays top dollar for the privilege. Golovkin’s promoter K2 has done their best in building up Golovkin to be the star he is now. But K2 has failed to draw Cotto, Martinez, Floyd or Canelo into a ring with Golovkin. But it’s not K2s fault. Houdini, Don King, Donald Trump and Les Moonves would have also failed to produce those fights. Because Golovkin is too damn good for his own good. If Golovkin would have beaten all four (and for certain he would have) he would be earning at least $25 million a fight now. The key to Mayweather’s career was getting the Gatti fight – and the fact that Gatti and his promoter Main Events did not duck Mayweather, even though just about everyone knew Floyd was a different class and would handle Gatti easily. That set up Mayweather vs De La Hoya. Again, Oscar could have ducked the fight and let Floyd linger as a second tier star. But De La Hoya did what was right for the sport. This era of star fighters like Mayweather, Cotto and Canelo are cheating the sport and Golovkin out of the opportunity of reaching the level of elite superstar status – and the huge purses that go along with being an elite superstar. It’s just another way how the sport of boxing continues to self-destruct and lose ground to UFC and other sports. Boxing and all sports are star-driven and Golovkin has been cheated of attaining and fulfilling his complete star status. Because despite his innocence in the situation, people can always tag Golovkin with the label that he really hasn’t beaten anyone. Which is unfair because Golovkin would have beaten everyone. In actuality, he did beat them – without even having to land one punch – but the public and history will not see it that way. Thus boxing today does not have its rightful and deserving undisputed super power super star wearing the crown as “The Face of Boxing. ”
Golovkin will proceed with his career and beat Saunders, Eubank and Jacobs and whichever other challengers decide to step up to the plate. But at age 34, time is limited. Eventually Golovkin will fade and lose. He will not earn the $30 – $50 million paydays he absolutely deserves. He will never be truly and properly embraced and understood by the public or the media because Mayweather, Canelo, Cotto and Martinez didn’t have the courage, confidence or honor to fight him. And Golovkin himself will never know how great he really, truly was. Because he never did and never will get the chance to fight the very best while in his prime years. Golovkin’s incredible skillset was never pushed to the limit or forced to dig down deep and show the very, very best boxing abilities and instincts he has inside his heart and soul. And to the enormous frustration of the sport and history and also Golovkin himself, Golovkin’s very best, most dazzling performances will forever lay untapped, unknown and unseen. Scoop Malinowski’s seventh book “Facing McEnroe” is available at amazon. com
(Photo by Wojciech Kubik).