The hottest name in boxing at the moment is KO king, Gennady Golovkin. Like most KO specialists, he is pulling in the crowds by the manner in which most of his fights end. A record of 31-0 with 28 knockouts is hugely impressive but how good is he?
Some of the best punchers in boxing history have not necessarily been the greatest boxers. A strategy of protecting them from dangerous opponents while they rack up a string of early knockouts has served to hide the sorts of flaws only exposed when they finally come up against opponents, who are able and prepared to stand up long enough to detect and then take advantage of weaknesses not previously exposed.
Golovkin’s Boxing Career
Is Golovkin one of these? I do not believe so. He has been around a long time, compiled an amateur record of 345-5 and has been fighting as a professional for eight years. There have been no shortcuts to his success. He is the product of a tough upbringing in which his two brothers deliberately pushed him into street fights from childhood. Both these brothers were killed during service in the Russian army, before he reached his teenage years. He was a gold medallist at the 2003 World Amateur Championships and an Olympic silver medallist in 2004.
Since 2010 trainer Abil Sanchez has added Mexican aggression to the Kazakh discipline to make him the perfect fighting machine. Golovkin is on a run of 18 consecutive stoppages. Along the way, he has knocked out three fighters who had never previously been stopped, so his punching power is undeniable. Another string to his bow is that his power is unpredictable, his knockouts coming from body punches, left hooks and overhand rights.
As far as his defence is concerned, he is seldom hit solidly and when he is, he has shown that he possesses an iron chin. In 375 fights, amateur and professional, he has never been on the canvas. He is accurate, intelligent and always in control. If he has any weaknesses, they are very well disguised. To all intents and purposes, he is currently, pound for pound, the world’s best fighter.