Doug Fischer

Dougie’s massive Monday mailbag

Brook-vs.-GGG_mailbag-inside

BROOLOVKIN

Hi Doug,

I think you may have to write two opinion pieces or maybe hit two birds with one stone!

Gennady Golovkin travelling to England is one big plus right and it’ll be the full middleweight limit?

Good luck dealing with a deluge of mail this weekend. Team Golovkin obviously don’t read the mailbag! – Ray K

Sure they do. But you’re right, I might have to add an opinion piece about Golovkin-Brook to go along with one I’m planning to pen on the Canelo criticism.

However, the emails from late Friday and Saturday morning were mostly (and surprisingly) positive, as you’ll see. There are a bunch of unread emails from earlier on Friday that could contain a few angst/outrage bombs (and if so, I’ll get to those and post them in Friday’s mailbag). But for now, the shocking Golovkin-Brook announcement seems to have elicited mostly excitement from mailbag readers (many, but not all, of whom reside in the UK).

Maybe GGG’s UK debut is a “big plus,” as you believe, or maybe some “purist” fans are relieved the fight wasn’t set at a catchweight (yes, Golovkin can weigh-in at the middleweight limit of 160), or perhaps most hardcore followers are willing to give the No. 1-rated middleweight a pass because they know that he’s been trying to land the top 160 pounders without success.

You can read their opinions for yourself after these words from Triple T (who’s definitely not a sponsor but I welcome his somewhat deranged thoughts because he brought up tonight’s Kovalev-Chilemba fight).

GGG, KRUSHER AND PUNCK-OUTS

Hey Dougie. Ready to rap?

  1. In the last Bag one of the baggers questioned B-Hops top-5 ranking spite being inactive ever since he got punched around by Kovalev back in 2014. Indeed I wondered the same thing myself. I also have to question Andre Ward being in the top 5. He still has yet to fight an actual contender at 175. My only guess for his high ranking is because he’s Andre Ward. Would anyone else get a top-5 ranking when the best guy he faced was Sullivan Barrera? I doubt it.
  1. Kovalev-Chilemba. OK, here’s my take. Chilemba’s currently ranked at 7th. But with different judges Chilemba could be a top 5er right now. His fight with Eder Alvarez could have gone either way. Alvarez pretty much won a coin-toss decision. I actually had Chilemba punching out a very narrow win. I guess I’m saying this just as a reminder to those jerk-offs who rag out about Kovalev’s level of competition. Especially in comparision to Ward’s and Stevenson’s rather flimsy opposition in recent fights. Two big thumbs up for Kov who like GGG is the one hell-bent on cleaning out his division.
  1. Providing Kov gets Chilemba out of the way (He should!), here’s my prediction regarding Kovalev-Ward. It probably won’t happen. I like to see Ward prove me wrong but we all know how it is with Ward. He barely steps in the ring and when he does its against a total sap. And he’s just too busy suing the asses off anything that moves. I won’t be surprised if Kov-Ward becomes this never-ending cycle of bulls__t as was the case of Mayweather-Pacquiao and which seems to be direction that GGG-Canelo has taken. Furthermore, hasn’t Ward already wimped out on GGG. So how can we trust him to man up against Kovalev?
  1. Speaking of GGG, with all the remaining top middleweights running to the hills when can we expect to see him in the ring again before the year is up? The one thing among others that we loved about Triple G is that he fought 3-4 times a year. But that’s going to be hard to do now thanks to Canelo and those other punk-outs who refuse to step up.

Have a good one! – Triple T

I will. Good to hear from ya, TTT. I’ll respond to your last question first because you obviously sent this email to me before the Golovkin-Brook announcement. So the answer to your question is Sept. 10, and that’s also part of the answer to why Golovkin accepted Brook as a challenger. Team GGG lost so much time negotiating with Canelo since early May and later with Chris Eubank Jr. (with some BJS BS in-between), that they were running out of time to hold a training camp to prepare for their HBO date. With all of the name middleweights playing hard-to-get, the door was left open for a smaller (but talented) titleholder to seize an opportunity.

I’ll respond to your other comments in order:

1.) No doubt about it, elite-level boxers (or even formerly elite boxers) that have proven track records of excellence get a lot of leeway and the benefit of the doubt from the Editorial Board and Ratings Panel. I don’t always agree with that special treatment but I understand it.

2.) Kovalev-Chilemba. OK, here’s my take. Chilemba’s currently ranked at 7th. But with different judges Chilemba could be a top 5er right now. I agree.

I guess I’m saying this just as a reminder to those jerk-offs who rag out about Kovalev’s level of competition. What dips__ts do that?

Especially in comparison to Ward’s and Stevenson’s rather flimsy opposition in recent fights. Two big thumbs up for Kov who like GGG is the one hell-bent on cleaning out his division. Yes, major props to all titleholders that want to prove to be the undisputed champ by collecting every belt in their weight class.

3.) I won’t be surprised if Kov-Ward becomes this never-ending cycle of bulls__t as was the case of Mayweather-Pacquiao and which seems to be direction that GGG-Canelo has taken. Oh come on, man. I know the #MayPac Never-Ending Story irreparably damaged the collective psyches of boxing fans, but why piss on the scheduled Kovalev-Ward showdown? It’s clearly not hampered by the situation that prevented Mayweather-Pacquiao from happening for years. Both fighters HAD to agree to face each other late this year as part of renewing their TV deals with HBO, they signed a contract that allowed for two bouts this year before they get it on (Kovalev faces his No. 2 tonight in Russia; Ward is scheduled to face his No. 2 in Oakland on Aug. 6), they have a date and venue for their HBO PPV showdown (Nov. 11 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas) and neither fighter (nor their promoters) have said ANYTHING that would suggest that they don’t want the bout to happen.

Furthermore, hasn’t Ward already wimped out on GGG? Not according Ward and his fans. They believe it was Tom Loeffler and Golovkin that declined a supposedly proposed bout.

So how can we trust him to man up against Kovalev? A) Because he’s shown that he is willing to prove that he’s the best in his chosen division before (with the Super Six World Boxing Classic tournament that crowned him as the super middleweight champ), and B) there aren’t any other major fight options for him.

 

MIXED EMOTIONS AND THE TINGE OF NAUSEOUSNESS

Dear Dougie,

When I heard the news Kell Brook was fighting GGG I ran the gauntlet of emotions. Brook should be commended for pulling the man card on every other middleweight including Eubank, Canelo, Jacobs and BJS. He has watermelons for balls, but is he crazy and is this dangerous for his health? This is not Duran going up in weight to face Leonard, or Pac to face De La Hoya or Leonard to Hagler or any of the other examples Abel Sanchez gave in the RingTV.com article published recently. If I was Brooks’ manager I would vehemently disagree with this move. 

I know GGG is trying to get paid and at 34 he is running out of time and no one at 160 is willing to fight him. However, in my opinion this certainly does not bolster his credentials in any way. Is GGG pulling a Canelo by fighting a welterweight—seems so? I have tremendous respect for GGG’s skills but this is ludicrous. It lessens my respect for GGG, call me whiny never satisfied boxing fan but that is the way I feel. This is a far greater mismatch than GGG going to 175 and fighting a Stevenson, Kovalev, Ward or Beterbiev. 

My questions:

1) Does GGG have no viable options at middleweight or super middleweight

2) What about all the quality welterweights or 154s that Brook could take on, why in the world would he do this to himself

3) Do you give Brook any chance at all—give me a % please

4) Is this not indicative of the sorry state of boxing in general. That being money first, politics second and competitive match-ups a distance third

My prediction for Brook to quote the great Clubber Lang —-PAIN. Have a good weekend. – Aaron, Miami

I had a great one. I’ll answer your questions in order:

1) The only viable middleweights for Golovkin in my opinion are Daniel Jacobs, Billy Joe Saunders, Canelo Alvarez, Chris Eubank Jr., and maybe Tureano Johnson (because of his rugged come-forward style). None of them were ready to fight Golovkin on Sept. 10. The only viable super middleweights for Golovkin in my opinion are James DeGale, Badou Jack and Gilberto Ramirez. DeGale and Jack are tentatively scheduled to face each other on Showtime (and both appear committed to Showtime, which could conflict with GGG’s deal with HBO). Ramirez just injured his hand (and he and his promoter are on record about being willing to face Golovkin, but sometime in 2017). So, no, I don’t think GGG had any “viable” options among 160- and 168-pound standouts.

2) What about all the quality welterweights or 154s that Brook could take on, why in the world would he do this to himself – That’s a question for Brook and his promoter, Eddie Hearn. I can only guess as to their reasoning but I think it goes something like this: the GGG fight is a huge event in the UK, it’s the most money that Brook can make and they don’t view Golovkin as unbeatable.

3) Do you give Brook any chance at all—give me a % please – I give him 10% chance to pull off the upset; 20-25% chance to be competitive in a loss.

4) Is this not indicative of the sorry state of boxing in general. That being money first, politics second and competitive match-ups a distance third. Yes, it is, but I think it might be more indicative of current world-class fighters’ fear of losing and their anxiety toward taking formidable challenges. 

He has watermelons for balls, but is he crazy and is this dangerous for his health? All fighters are a little bit crazy but I think Brook is among the most well-adjusted elite boxers. This fight is indeed dangerous for his health, but he obviously doesn’t view it as being as dangerous as you and other critics of the matchup see it.

This is not Duran going up in weight to face Leonard, or Pac to face De La Hoya or Leonard to Hagler or any of the other examples Abel Sanchez gave in the RingTV.com article published recently. Why do you say this? People thought Leonard was going to get his ass kicked by Hagler. Boss sports scribes ripped the matchup due to Leonard’s inactivity and unproven record above 154 pounds. Some feared that he would lose sight in the left eye that needed an operation to repair a detached retina in 1982.

Many boxing writers ripped the De La Hoya-Pacquiao fight due to the perceived size disparity. Golden Boy critic Kevin Iole openly feared for Pacquiao’s life going into that fight.  

I don’t recall what the perception was of Duran when he faced Leonard for the first time (I was only 10). My guess is that fans and the media gave Hands of Stone his due respect since he didn’t go directly from lightweight to welterweight to challenge Leonard (he had several fights over 140 pounds, including a 10-round decision over Carlos Palomino that made him the WBC’s No. 1 contender at 147 pounds, before he stepped in with the undefeated American darling).

If I was Brooks’ manager I would vehemently disagree with this move. And I wouldn’t blame ya. Just like I don’t blame Chris Eubank Sr. for adding demands that dashed his son’s challenge of GGG, or Saunders asking for Ft. Knox to risk his WBO belt (and neck), or GBP for delaying a showdown between their cash cow and Golovkin.

I know GGG is trying to get paid and at 34 he is running out of time and no one at 160 is willing to fight him. However, in my opinion this certainly does not bolster his credentials in any way. Fighting Brook won’t boost him further up any P4P list but it’s not a wasted fight. It’s an opportunity to headline a big event in a major international market for boxing. (And it keeps him from sitting on his ass like so many other world-class fighters of this era.)

Is GGG pulling a Canelo by fighting a welterweight—seems so? I don’t think so. Canelo had options for his May 7 dance partner (including GGG). Golovkin did not have any viable options. Also, Brook isn’t any average welterweight. He’s the No. 1 welterweight, according to THE RING and the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board. He’s undefeated in 36 bouts and the IBF titleholder.

I have tremendous respect for GGG’s skills but this is ludicrous. It lessens my respect for GGG, call me whiny never satisfied boxing fan but that is the way I feel. You’re a whiny, never-satisfied boxing fan.

You just admitted that “no one at 160 is willing to fight” Golovkin. Why hold it against him if the top welterweight isn’t nervous like all these tough-talking middleweights that seem to lose their pens when a contract is shoved in their faces?

This is a far greater mismatch than GGG going to 175 and fighting a Stevenson, Kovalev, Ward or Beterbiev. Really? You’d give Golovkin a shot to beat those light heavies? I think you might be right. Maybe we’ll find out one day vs. the winner of Kovalev-Ward.

 

GOLOVKIN-BROOK

Doug,

Hi I just wanted to say a quick thank you for publishing my letter, I guess the moral of the story here is ‘patience boy’ haha.

What a shock that is! GGG and Kell Brook are probably my two favourite fighters so to see them square off will be awesome. Will you head to the UK for the fight or will you have obligations in the US?

Do you ever come over to the UK for fights?

Finally, I can only see 1 winner in the fight – do you see anyway Kell pulls this off?

Thanks again and keep up the good work. – Paul

Thanks for sharing your thoughts (and enthusiasm), Paul.

We have to consider Golovkin to be an overwhelming favorite in this matchup. I can envision Brook giving Golovkin a fight (and the fans a thrill) for a number of rounds by standing his ground (as much as he can) and engaging in close (much the same way naturally smaller Kassim Ouma did in 2011, but with better technique), I don’t see him pulling off the upset.

Do you ever come over to the UK for fights? I was in Manchester for Carl Franpton-Scott Quigg early in the year. The fight did not deliver but the fans and the atmosphere inside Manchester Arena certainly did. The energy (and noise level) was amazing. I intend to return to England as soon as I can and I’ve given consideration to travelling to Jorge Linares-Anthony Crolla. I’m a big GGG booster and a Special K fan, so obviously I’ll think about covering Golovkin-Brook. However, if HBO does a split-site broadcast for their Sept. 10 “Championship Boxing” doubleheader and the Roman Gonzalez-Carlos Cuadras fight is made and lands in Southern California (either at The Forum or SubHub Center), I will probably stay put.

EXHIBITION-STYLE MATCHMAKING

Hi Doug,

Hope you’ve been good!

Having seen GGG Vs Brook being announced I’ve noticed a recent trend in matchmaking: a number of promoters and boxers seem to be chasing high profile “exhibition style” matchups rather than fights that will lead to a belt/ undisputed champ status. Due to the rise of PPV, the ridiculous number of belts and weight classes as well as promoters c__k-blocking each other, it looks like this might be the state of matchmaking for some time.  

Is this just a blip or is this boxing for the foreseeable future? Also whatever it is; do you like these kinds of matchups? Personally they excite and confuse me at the same time! Thanks. – Miles from London, UK 

I’m generally ambivalent about high-profile bouts that matchup up elite boxers from different weight classes (especially when nobody was clamoring for those particular fights).

As an emerging hardcore fan, I was into the Terry Norris-Meldrick Taylor junior middleweight title bout in 1992 (which was contested at 149-pound catchweight). But I was a massive “Terrible Terry” fan. I didn’t care that Taylor (the reigning WBA welterweight beltholder at the time) was a natural 140 pounder, or that this was just two years removed from the devastating loss to Julio Cesar Chavez, or that the gutsy Philly native had been dropped twice in his previous fight (vs. Glenwood Brown). I just wanted to see Norris win.

As a member of the media, I didn’t care enough about the Bernard Hopkins-Winky Wright lineal light heavyweight title bout in 2007 (which was contested at a 170-pound catchweight) to cover it live. MaxBoxing cohort Steve Kim and I gladly sat that HBO PPV card out. The boxing styles of the fighters played a big part in that decision (we knew they wouldn’t mesh well at all), but also the fact that Wright had never fought above 160 pounds.

However, a year later we were both intrigued by the prospect of Oscar De La Hoya vs. Manny Pacquiao. (We weren’t even against the De La Hoya-Sergio Mora matchup that was proposed in the event that Pacquiao’s people priced the Filipino star out of the bizarre HBO PPV showdown with The Golden Boy, but I digress.) Despite the fact that the fight was to take place at welterweight and Pacquiao had just stepped up to the 135-pound division, we liked his chances against the faded superstar (Kim picked the PacMan to win once the fight was finalized).

But for the most part, I like to see major fights between the top dogs of a particular division, especially if those showdowns are going to crown the undisputed champ or the undeniable best of that weight class, as did Ray Leonard-Thomas Hearns I, Donald Curry-Milton McCrory, Mike Tyson-Michael Spinks, Chavez-Taylor I, Michael Carbajal-Chiquita Gonzalez I, Roy Jones Jr.-James Toney, Lennox Lewis-Evander Holyfield I, Felix Trinidad-De La Hoya, Erik Morales-Marco Antonio Barrera I, Trinidad-Fernando Vargas, Hopkins-Trinidad, De La Hoya-Vargas, Kostya Tszyu-Zab Judah, Joe Calzaghe-Jeff Lacy (and Mikkel Kessler), Ward-Carl Froch, etc. You get the picture. They weren’t all major events and they didn’t all make for compelling bouts, but when the fights were great or dramatic (Leonard-Hearns, Morales-Barrera, Carbajal-Gonzalez, Trinidad-Vargas, De La Hoya-Vargas) it enhanced the sport; and when one fighter dominated (as Curry, Tyson, Jones, Tszyu, Calzaghe and Ward did) the boxing world knew a truly special champion had emerged.

Is this just a blip or is this boxing for the foreseeable future? I think we’re going to have to get used to it given the various promotional Cold Wars and network exclusivity that currently exists.

NOTABLE WELTER-VS.-MIDDLE MATCHUPS

Hi Doug,

What notable welters of the past have challenged middles in their class? With what outcome? Cheers. – Cool Ichi

The best welterweights (often, but not always, the champ or a major beltholder) have challenged the middleweight champ (or a recognized titleholder) since THE RING magazine has been in existence (it was founded in 1922).

I’ll list the notable welterweight-vs.-middleweight showdowns of each decade (remember, these are just the high-profile fights, there are more than are listed here):

1920s: Mickey Walker vs. Harry Greb

(Walker was the reigning welterweight champ; Greb, who won a 15-round decision, was the defending middleweight champ)

1930s: Henry Armstrong vs. Ceferino Garcia

(Armstrong was the reigning welterweight champ; Garcia was recognized as the middleweight champ by the powerful New York and California boxing commissions. They fought to a 10-round draw)

1940s: Sugar Ray Robinson vs. Jake LaMotta I, II, III, IV and V

(Robinson, who went 4-1 vs. his crosstown rival in four hotly contested 10-rounders and one 12-rounder, was a top welterweight prospect and contender; LaMotta was a top middleweight prospect and contender)

1950s: Kid Gavilan vs. Carl “Bobo” Olson

(Gavilan was the reigning welterweight champ; Olson, who won a 15-round decision, was the defending middleweight champ)

Carmen Basilio vs. Robinson

(Basilio, the reigning welterweight champ, won a 15-round decision over Robinson, the defending middleweight champ. It was THE RING’s Fight of the Year for 1957)

1960s: Emile Griffith vs. Dick Tiger

(Griffith, the reigning welterweight champ, won a 10-round decision over Tiger, the defending middleweight champ)

Luis Rodriguez vs. Nino Benvenuti

(Rodriguez, a former welterweight champ, was knocked out in Round 11 by Benvenuti, the defending middleweight champ. Rodriguez was thought to be winning the fight at the time of stoppage)

1970s: Jose Napoles vs. Carlos Monzon

(Napoles, the reigning welterweight champ, was stopped in Round 7 but Monzon, the defending middleweight champ)

1980s: Roberto Duran vs. Marvin Hagler and Iran Barkley

Roberto Duran lands a right uppercut against Iran Barkley during their WBC middleweight title bout on Feb. 24, 1989, in Atlantic City, N.J. The 12-round bout was THE RING’s Fight of the Year. Photo by The Ring Magazine/Getty Images

Photo / The Ring Magazine

(Duran, a former WBC welterweight champ and reigning WBC 154-pound titleholder, dropped a 15-round decision to Hagler, the defending undisputed middleweight champ and won a 12-round decision over Barkley, the defending WBC middleweight titleholder. Duran-Barkley was THE RING’s Fight of the Year for 1989. Duran was also the former lightweight champ, which is why Hands of Stone is a true all-time great)

Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Hagler

(Leonard, a former welterweight champ and WBA 154-pound titleholder, won a 12-round decision over Hagler, the defending WBC titleholder. It was THE RING’s Fight of the Year for 1987)

1990s: Marlon Starling vs. Michael Nunn

(Starling, the reigning WBC welterweight titleholder, dropped a 12-round decision to Nunn, the defending IBF middleweight titleholder)

Donald Curry vs. Nunn

(Curry, the former welterweight champ and WBC 154-pound beltholder, was stopped in Round 10 by Nunn, the defending IBF middleweight titleholder)

Simon Brown vs. Lonnie Bradley and Bernard Hopkins

(Brown, the former IBF and WBC welterweight titleholder who briefly held the WBC 154-pound belt, dropped a 12-round decision to Bradley, the defending WBO middleweight beltholder, and was stopped in Round 6 by Hopkins, the reigning IBF middleweight titleholder)

2000s: Felix Trinidad vs. William Joppy

(Trinidad, the former IBF and WBC welterweight beltholder and reigning WBA/IBF 154-pound titleholder, stopped Joppy, the defending WBA middleweight titleholder, in Round 5)

Cory Spinks vs. Jermain Taylor

(Spinks, the former IBF/WBA/WBC/RING welterweight champ and reigning IBF 154-pound beltholder, dropped a 12-round decision to Taylor, the defending WBC/WBO/RING middleweight champ)

[Former welterweight titleholders Trinidad and Oscar De La Hoya also challenged Hopkins, but they did so as fellow middleweight beltholders, so I’m going to leave those matches off this list.]

2010s: Amir Khan vs. Canelo Alvarez

(Khan, a welterweight contender, was stopped in Round 6 by Alvarez, the defending RING and WBC champ)

Kell Brook vs. Gennady Golovkin

(Brook is the reigning IBF welterweight beltholder; Golovkin is the defending WBA/IBF/WBC middleweight titleholder)

DOES ANYONE WIN?

Hey Dougie,

Okay so Golovkin-Brook is a big shock. We all know that. It’s an eerily similar fight to Khanelo obviously and maybe because of that similarity it’s made me more cynical about this fight than I would have been otherwise. Enough about Canelo though, the GGG-Canelo saga is on hold for now and similarities aside this has nothing to do with that possible future match-up. 

So my cynical mind is wondering about this fight: who wins here? Clearly the fans don’t, we want GGG in with top middleweights, guys we see as threats. We just want good fights. GGG sure doesn’t win, he gets slack from some for KOing decent middleweights imagine the haters outrage at this! Even as a big fan of his though I can’t defend this match-up much. I see it as a total mismatch. Ashamed to say I’ll still watch though… Being a fan of both guys I really can’t help it. 

Anyway what I want to say is that I don’t think Kell Brook wins much either from this fight (unless of course he actually wins the fight!!). Khan was praised for fighting Canelo, and rightly so, but where is he now? That’s a question for another time but I feel like everyone has just moved on from that fight, shrugged their shoulders and said “oh well he tried”. It hasn’t really changed my opinion on Khan that much I’m afraid. And I worry that I might end up feeling the same afterwards should Brook get knocked out in September. Oh well, he tried, hurry on back to welterweight so we can see some more interesting fights. Am I crazy for just wanting this over with so that I can see two boxers that I am fans of get on with fighting more interesting fights in their respective divisions? 

I mean Khan and Brook could have easily fought each other already and made a boat load of money doing it! But oh no a loss to another WW would be far more damaging than losing to MWs. Aside from the positives of winning do you think that may be a little bit of a factor in these two recent fights? No lose situations and a decent payday, not bad I suppose…

Thanks Dougie, hope you can handle the stress of the GGG-Canelo talk being brought right back up again after you thought you had it dead and buried. What a sport! – Stuart, Scotland

Indeed! Don’t worry about me, Stuart. I can handle anything this beautifully chaotic sport or its wonderfully manic fans can throw my way.

So my cynical mind is wondering about this fight: who wins here? Golovkin will likely win the fight. You don’t need the ghost of Eddie Futch to possess you in order to know that. Golovkin will also likely win a lot of British fans that will get to witness the “Big Drama Show” live and in person. Brook will likely win mad respect on both sides of the Pond if he is able to compete (even if it’s for just a few rounds) with Golovkin. If he’s able to go the distance and snap GGG’s KO streak he will score the proverbial moral victory and seriously elevate his status in the sport.

Clearly the fans don’t, we want GGG in with top middleweights, guys we see as threats. I’m not so sure about that. I mean, I know what fans SAY they want. They want Golovkin vs. Canelo or another standout middleweight. But if Golovkin vs. Canelo, Saunders or Eubank were made, I’m certain that very few fans would view those opponents as “threats.”

We just want good fights. You’re in luck. GGG always makes for good fights. That’s why he’s got a growing fan base.

GGG sure doesn’t win, he gets slack from some for KOing decent middleweights imagine the haters outrage at this! Yeah, but that “slack” only comes from morons.

Even as a big fan of his though I can’t defend this match-up much. You don’t have to.

I see it as a total mismatch. That’s OK.

Ashamed to say I’ll still watch though… Being a fan of both guys I really can’t help it. Don’t be ashamed. You’re just being honest. (And you’ve also made Tom Loeffler and Eddie Hearn very happy, so feel good about that.)

Khan was praised for fighting Canelo, and rightly so, but where is he now? He’s chillin’, a couple million dollars richer, and nobody views him as any less of a welterweight than he was prior to Canelo (though some have called for him to retire).

That’s a question for another time but I feel like everyone has just moved on from that fight, shrugged their shoulders and said “oh well he tried”. They do the same thing when legit middleweights get stopped by GGG.

It hasn’t really changed my opinion on Khan that much I’m afraid. And I worry that I might end up feeling the same afterwards should Brook get knocked out in September. Oh well, he tried, hurry on back to welterweight so we can see some more interesting fights. What’s so bad about that?

Am I crazy for just wanting this over with so that I can see two boxers that I am a fan of get on with fighting more interesting fights in their respective divisions? No, not at all. I’m sure many other fans share your opinion. However, there are also many fans who want to see what happens when Brook challenges Golovkin.

I mean Khan and Brook could have easily fought each other already and made a boat load of money doing it! Yeah, but egos and politics got in the way of that 147-pound clash. It can still happen, though.

SHOCKED BUT PUMPED

Hey Dougie,

Am I the only one who was rather pumped to hear the GGG-Brook fight announced? I whooped in excitement when I saw the headline. Frankly, I’m far more interested in this matchup than I would have been in GGG-Eubank. I think it will provide an interesting clash of styles for however long it lasts. Despite the weight difference I think Brook may be the highest caliber fighter GGG has faced. And Brook seems fairly large and strong for a welterweight.

Not saying he has a good chance to win, but it’s an interesting fight! Be well, good sir! – Max Moorman, Colorado Springs, CO

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Max.

I think Golovkin-Brook is an interesting matchup, but I would have preferred the fight with Eubank Jr. even though the young middleweight contender is still a bit green and not as accomplished as the undefeated IBF welterweight titleholder.

I thought Eubank’s confidence/cockiness, athleticism, one-shot power and somewhat unorthodox style could make for a fun scrap until GGG’s pressure and body attack (backed by his experience and superior fundamentals) break the British champ down. But maybe his father, who was infamous for his cockiness, wasn’t all that confident of his son’s chances. And I’m not mad at him for that if that’s the case. There’s more for Eubank to learn before he takes on the best fighter in his division.

On the other hand, I don’t think Brook is in any need of further seasoning. He’s at his peak (and was probably in danger of “dying on the vine” as the old-timers day). Brook’s an experienced, talented and well-rounded boxer-puncher with a deep toolbox. The only thing he’s lacking in regard to Golovkin is size, and I don’t think he’s a pipsqueak next to GGG. Brook has fought comfortably and well weighing over the welterweight limit, as high as 155 pounds.    

Am I the only one who was rather pumped to hear the GGG-Brook fight announced? No, you weren’t (as you’ll see when you read the next two emails).

I think it will provide an interesting clash of styles for however long it lasts. We will see. You might be right.

Despite the weight difference I think Brook may be the highest caliber fighter GGG has faced. Arguably, yes.

And Brook seems fairly large and strong for a welterweight. Agreed.

KELLOVKIN

Yes Yes Yes,

Dougmeister General, don’t you dare tell me you’re not psyched about this announcement.

Forget the Bob Arum “it doesn’t make sense” nonsense that welterweights shouldn’t face middleweights bulls__t, we all know it’s nights like this that make boxing the centre of the sporting world if just for that one night.

Both in their prime, both want the fight, two guys letting their records go for the love of the game. As a philosopher once said “I would drag my balls through ten miles of broken glass just to smell the atmosphere through a straw” (alright it was probably a drunk patron of a local pub but still)! I’m going to be stuck to TicketMaster’s website as soon as the tickets are ready!! (Have I mentioned I’m excited)

My prediction is actually a close decision in favour of Triple G, and I’m a big Brook fan. Brook has great defensive knowhow and is naturally powerful at 147, so forget the Canelo-Khan comparisons, Khan wasn’t particularly powerful at 140. GGG just has the edge of dealing with heavy handed foes. I’m not sure Brook will have felt that sort of power before.

Anyways you will get loads of these and I needed someone to witter my excitement too, and you’re that lucky guy as always!

Much love to the mailbag contributors and your fine-self sir. – Dan, UK

Thank you for sharing your thoughts (and excitement) and for saying I’m “fine” (I haven’t been told that since my college days).

I gotta be honest, I did not expect to receive any emails like this one (or the previous email) following the Golovkin-Brook announcement. I guess I’m used to the Doomsayers and Negative Nellies.

But something tells me that the o2 Arena will be packed with 20,000 fans that are every bit as hyped as you are on Sept. 10. And that’s not a bad thing.

Dougmeister General, don’t you dare tell me you’re not psyched about this announcement. I’m not as psyched as you are, but thank you for the new title. (I like it!)

My prediction is actually a close decision in favour of Triple G, and I’m a big Brook fan. I gathered that.

Brook has great defensive knowhow and is naturally powerful at 147… Agreed.

GGG just has the edge of dealing with heavy handed foes. That’s not his only edge.

I’m not sure Brook will have felt that sort of power before. He hasn’t.

EXCITED

Hi Doug,

I’m excited about the Brook v Golovkin tangle, as they are two of my favourite fighters. Having followed Kell for his entire career I would really love to see an upset, and I was wondering if you could tell me how that might happen?

Kell is used to being the boss physically but this probably won’t be the case in September. How can he adjust to get a result? Thanks. – Ryan

I’m just a boxing columnist, Ryan, I can’t give you any blueprint or pointers for Brook. He’s going to have to figure it out himself and make the right adjustments when he’s in there with GGG. That’s what great fighters do, and it usually takes a great welterweight to beat the top middleweight.

I will say this: I don’t think Brook should change much. If he’s gotten to where he is now by “being the boss physically,” as you say, I think he should stick with that vs. Golovkin (or at least give it the ole college try).

I remember when THE RING (or maybe it was Boxing Illustrated) polled a bunch of sports writers and boxing insiders about the Mike Tyson-Evander Holyfield matchup (when it was supposed to happen in 1991). Most just said Holyfield is doomed, but the late, great Angelo Dundee gave The Real Deal a good shot and said he could pull it off as long as he didn’t change a thing about his style or ring mentality and went in there and acted like a boss the way he always did. Dundee turned out to be right.

Kassim Ouma put hands on Golovkin and busted up the Good Boy Killer’s face a bit by getting in his grill. Willie Monroe Jr. had his moments for a couple rounds by engaging on the inside. Maybe Brook should do the same thing but in his own way.

 

 

Email Fischer at dougie@boxingmailbag.com. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram and Periscope.

 

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