In the wake of three intense weeks of boxing featuring three of the sport’s biggest stars, questions are looming as to what is next for some of boxing’s elite. Mayweather dominated Pacquiao, Canelo destroyed Kirkland, and last night Golovkin gave Monroe a beating. Now all three are without opponents giving the fans something to talk about over the next two months while waiting for the next big fights to be signed.
Should Cotto prove to be victorious against Danny Geale on June 6th all signs are pointing towards a Cotto-Canelo showdown in the fall. Floyd Mayweather toys around with the Amir Khan option in September. Canelo says that he will fight in September as well on the same date, September 12th, that Floyd Mayweather wants. He wants Cotto on that date. This would make the second time this year that Mayweather and Canelo fight over the now famous Mexican holiday fight weekends. They did this early this year, and Mayweather pushed Canelo off the May 2nd date by fighting Manny Pacquiao. This time though, if Cotto can go in September, a Mayweather-Khan fight isn’t likely to back Canelo down.
While a Mayweather-Khan fight isn't a fight that will entice that fans to dish out $80 after feeling robbed of how easily Mayweather handled Pacquiao three weeks ago, the fight could still sell enough for Showtime to be happy with the end result of their six fight deal with Mayweather. But if they want big, if they want big numbers, then testing the Gennady Golovkin waters is something they may want to touch their feet with.
Last night both Gennady Golovkin and his promoter Tom Loeffler said once again that Golovkin would be willing to go down to 154 lbs to face Floyd Mayweather. When Golovkin was asked about facing Floyd Mayweather he said, "Show me the contract." They didn't focus on that fight, mainly because they know getting Mayweather into the ring with him would be a long shot. Not only would it be difficult to convince Floyd to face a middleweight, though Golovkin is the same size as Canelo, but Golovkin is contracted to HBO. That means that once again Showtime and HBO would have to collaborate to show the fight. It wouldn't be as difficult as the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight mainly because Bob Arum wouldn't be involved to push Floyd’s buttons, and HBO and Tom Loeffler know very well they are the C side in the negotiations, meaning big money for Floyd, and not much for Golovkin.
However, Gennady Golovkin is already a seller in the United States. Over 12,000 fans at The Forum proved that last night, along with his StubHub record breaking attendance numbers last October when he defeated Marco Antonio Rubio. He does very good numbers on HBO as well.
Big boxing matches have always been a thing of hype. The argument will be made that Golovkin hasn’t had his own PPV yet, so how could he give Floyd good numbers in a PPV fight. That theory would be inaccurate. Canelo hadn't had his own PPV fight until his first fight with Mayweather though the fight managed to produce a 2.2 million PPV buy, now the third highest in boxing history. The same could be done if Golovkin would step into the ring with Floyd. Yes, Canelo had a huge Mexican following, but that was mainly in Mexico where the fight was shown for free. In the United States Canelo was just starting to become a household name. There were many casual fans that didn't even know Canelo’s name when he was scheduled to face Mayweather. They did however, buy and watch the fight. Why? Because the lingering idea floating around the nation was that Canelo had a great chance to beat Floyd Mayweather. Hardcore fans believed it, the media said he was dangerous, and they convinced people around the nation that it could happen. The thought of Mayweather losing enticed an extra 1.3 million PPV buys over his average. In the famous quote of Floyd Mayweather himself, “They pay to see me win, they pay to see me lose, but they all pay.”
That same effect would boom through the nation if Gennady Golovkin were to sign to face Floyd. The general idea would be that not only does Golovkin have a good chance to beat Mayweather, but a chance to knock him out. That alone is a reason to pay money for most people. Then people will begin to watch YouTube videos, study Golovkin, watch his interviews. And within one month this fight will be gaining the buzz and steam that the Canelo fight did in 2013. His undefeated record and knockout ration will entice many of the casual fans as well. Before we all know it we would be looking at another huge September fight with a PPV number that would likely exceed 2 million buys, once again.
Big fights are the result of big hype. Floyd Mayweather averages 900K PPV buys when he is facing a fighter that stands no chance against him, with a name that is known among boxing fans, but not among anyone else. When Guerrero and Maidana fought Floyd the general idea was that neither had a chance to beat him. This doesn’t entice casual fans to buy the fight mainly because Floyd isn't exciting to watch. They buy his fights because they want to see a guy that can beat him. The only way they know that is by hardcore fans and media telling them that they guy he is facing can beat him, whether or not they ever knew who he was before. That’s how the Canelo fight sold, and that is how a Gennady Golovkin fight would sell.
Gennday Golovkin’s name is gaining buzz around the states. That much is clear. Casual’s are starting to ask, “Who is this GGG guy everyone is talking about?” That question is usually followed by, “Is he in Floyd Mayweather’s division?” When that response is, “No, but they could fight.” The final question is always followed by, “Can he beat Floyd Mayweather?”
With only one fight left on his Showtime contract, Floyd is not a position where he “must” face Golovkin the way he had to against Pacquiao. He could very well go ride into the sunset by facing Amir Khan and retiring. (Though he will probably fight again in 2016 or 2017.) But if Floyd wants to go out with a bang, and make more than his $32 million guarantee (not that he needs more after the Pacquiao fight), Golovkin is a fight where he could make a lot of money on, and at the same time, win or lose, gain respect from many of his “haters” out there.