Gennadiy Golovkn could be facing former WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia, next May in what could be a set-up for a trilogy match between GGG and Canelo Alvarez in September.
If DAZN can convince Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs) to face Golovkin next September, it would be perfect for the two fighters to battle a day apart next May in tune-up fights. Canelo has an easy fight planned against his WBC 168-lb mandatory Avni Yildirim (21-2, 12 KOs) on February 27th in Guadalajara, Mexico.
After that, Canelo will be facing WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) in a unification clash on Cinco de May in May, whereas Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 Os) would be defending against the unbeaten #9 IBF Munguia (36-0 29 KOs) in May.
Munguia, 24, isn’t as talented as WBC 160-lb champion Jermall Charlo or WBO champ Demetrius Andrade, but he’s a safer pick for the 38-year-old Golovkin.
It’s obvious at this point in Golovkin’s career that he’s not going to face guys that will jeopardize his trilogy match with Canelo. It wouldn’t be a big deal if Golovkin knew that Canelo was never going to fight him again.
If Canelo made clear that he’s done with his rivalry with Golovkin, then we’d likely see the Kazakstan star take the risky fights against Andrade and Charlo, but that’s probably not going to happen.
Canelo isn’t going to openly say he’s never going to fight GGG again because that would anger many boxing fans and not please DAZN.
They want to see that fight a lot more than watching Alvarez beat up on guys like Callum Smith, Avni Yildirim, and Billy Joe Saunders.
GGG vs. Munguia warm-up for Canelo
“Would you rather see Canelo fight GGG or Saunders in May?” said Chris Mannix to DAZN.
“Give me the trilogy with GGG. This fight has an expiration date,” said Mora. “It has a sell-by date of 2021. If it doesn’t happen by then, it’s ruined and gone. It’s no good anymore. So it needs to be done by then, that’s what I want. Closeout the business, finish that fight, and move on.”
“All things being equal, I’d like to see Canelo – GGG in May as well,” Mannix said. “I don’t believe it has a sell-by-date of May 2021, especially when you factor in who’s being discussed as Golovkin’s next and that’s Jaime Munguia.
“Jaime Munguia was a very good 154-pounder. He’s coming off his best win as a middleweight against Tureano Johnson.
“But if you’re Gennadiy Golovkin, you’ve got to look at Jaime Munguia and say, ‘That’s an incredibly beatable fighter.’ If you’re Golovkin, if you beat Munguia, chances are, you do it spectacularly, and that increases your earning potential for a fight against Canelo in September 2021.
“Again, I would like to see it [Canelo – Golovkin III] happen as soon as possible because I think there’s a risk with Golovkin getting in the ring with any opponent, but if you can’t beat Munguia, you’ve got problems.
“I know Golden Boy believes Munguia is ready for Golovkin. I don’t. think it’s the right opponent because Golovkin is still a heavy hitter, and Munguia leads with his chin.
“But if you can get Golovkin – Munguia in April or May, Canelo – Saunders in May, and then move on to a trilogy in September, I think it [Canelo – Golovkin 3] has enough of shelf life to last until then.”
Munguia (36-0, 29 KOs) would be a good option for Golovkin to face to set up a fight with Canelo in September 2021, but you can’t count on that fight happening.
Alvarez will likely choose to face IBF super middleweight champion Caleb Plant next September rather than Golovkin. It’s pointless for Golovkin to face Munguia next May in what will likely be a grueling fight for him if Canelo won’t face him in September.
Canelo’s fight against the light-hitting WBO super middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders will be a far easier one for him than what Golovkin would be dealing with against Munguia.
When Canelo does finally choose to fight GGG, it’ll be in 2022, and fans will have forgotten about Golovkin’s match against Munguia.
That’s why it’s a waste of GGG’s time to face Munguia because he’ll get nothing from facing him. Munguia isn’t well respected by fans, who see him as a badly flawed fighter that was arguably beaten by Dennis Hogan in 2019.
Should Canelo fight Golovkin in May?
“In an ideal world, there’s a shelf life, but we all know boxing isn’t ideal,” said Mora. “One fight and you’re done. This fight [Canelo vs. GGG 3] for me needs to happen in May.
“Not only is Golovkin getting older, but that Munguia fight will be a physically bruising fight.
“I think Golovkin will probably win, but he’s already 38-years-old. If he has a really physical fight with a big strong guy like Munguia, that’s going to be a fight itself. So whatever Golovkin has left, I want to see it in May.
“I don’t want to see it in September, and I don’t want to see it after a grueling fight with Munguia.”
“You’re right about that. There could be a risk of Golovkin being physically worn down in a fight against Munguia, as he was in his fight against [Sergiy] Derevyanchenko,” said Mannix.
“I think there’s just as much upside with Golovkin stopping Munguia and saying, ‘I stopped the second most popular guy from Mexico or a guy in the mix.
“Now I’m going to go take on the most popular guy in Mexico.”
“In an ideal world but boxing doesn’t live in that fantasyland,” said Mora.
Alvarez has been putting off the trilogy fight with Golovkin since 2018, and it’s already wretched that he hasn’t fought him again. It looks from appearances that Canelo is waiting for Golovkin to get old enough for him to beat him without controversy finally. It’s pathetic.
It wouldn’t be so obvious if Canelo were facing quality guys like Jermall Charlo, Demetrius Andrade, Edgar Berlanga, and Artur Beterbiev while he makes GGG wait.
But Canelo hasn’t been doing that. He’s been facing shopworn fighters like Sergey Kovalev, Daniel Jacobs, Rocky Fielding, and a woefully bad Callum Smith.
Canelo should fight Golovkin in May, as that’s the fight that DAZN and the boxing public wants to see. The American fans don’t know Billy Joe Saunders anymore than they knew Rocky Fielding and Callum Smith.
It won’t help the promotion for a Canelo-Saunders fight if Canelo talks about how great he is.
The fans know Saunders isn’t an elite guy, and the casual fans don’t know who he is. They’re not going to take Canelo’s word for it if he calls Saunders the #1 fighter at 168 like he did with Callum Smith.
Canelo defending against Yildirim in February
“Canelo Alvarez plans on fighting Avni Yildrim on February 27th in Guadalajara, Mexico. Do you have an issue with Canelo picking Yildirim as his next opponent?” said Mannix to DAZN.
“This is a stay busy fight for Canelo,” said one of Canelo’s enablers, Sergio Mora, who is in favor of him fighting Yildirim after his mismatch against Callum Smith.
“He just had a 12 round fight against an opponent that was supposed to be very difficult for him a couple of weeks ago. It wasn’t. It was a one-sided beat down, and now he wants to fight three times next year in 2021.
“He has to have that mandatory [against Yildirim]. He’s fulfilling his obligation, he’s staying busy, he’s getting paid, and then he can move on to a bigger championship fight [against Billy Joe Saunders] in May.”
“If you’re Canelo and the plan is to fight three times in one year, one of those fights can be a lesser opponent, it can be a mandatory like Yildirim is,” said Mannix. “Now, I have many issues with Yildirim being a mandatory.
The fans want to see Canelo face quality guys, and they haven’t seen that since his controversial win over Golovkin in 2018. Yildirim is just another lackluster opponent for Canelo, and he fits in with the middle of the road opponents the Mexican star has been dining on. since 2018.
His last fight was a loss to Anthony Dirrell, and that will be two years ago [in February 2019] if this fight happens in February. So he doesn’t really deserve to be called a mandatory challenger, but he is at this point, so whatever.
If this is the fight that Canelo wants to take, have at it. It’s been nine years since he last fought in Mexico. He is the biggest star in Mexican boxing right now. Why not go back there?
Have some kind of hometown fight in front of his home fans during this pandemic, and then move on to other options. Billy Joe Saunders is on his radar, Gennadiy Golovkin is on his radar, Caleb Plant is on his radar.
If those are the types of fighters that he’s going to fight in May or September. I don’t really give a damn who he fights in February.”
“David Benavidez is on his radar, and I don’t give a damn either,” Mora said about Canelo.
“We want to see Canelo, we want to see him active, and we want to see him fight three times in 2021. He’s going to have to honor his obligations, honor his mandatory’s, and take care of business. I’m totally fine with it.”
The reaction boxing fans have had about the potential fight between Canelo Alvarez and his WBC mandatory challenger Avni Yildirim has been mostly negative.
Knowledgable boxing fans are well aware that Yildirim (21-2, 12 KOs) was beaten by Anthony Dirrell in his last fight almost two years ago, and they don’t understand how he can be the mandatory.
It’s as if Yildirim has failed his way into a title shot against WBC super middleweight champion Canelo (54-1-2, 36 KOs), and they don’t like that. In sports, don’t see failure allowing a team or person to advance to the championship.
Canelo will look bad in taking this fight with Yildirim, and DAZN won’t get anything out of it the way they would if Alvarez were to face talented opposition.
On the flip side, the casual boxing fans will have never heard of Yildirim, and they know anything about him. The end result will be zero buzz and poor numbers for DAZn.