Coming off his 22nd straight KO, Triple G has several options- er rather hopeful opponents he’d like to face. As his profile continues to grow, like how he was signed to the Jordan brand just days before the fight and showcased some sick new kicks in the ring, the spotlight becomes ever brighter on the boxers who haven’t yet or won’t get in the ring with him.
Last Spring, GGG defeated Marco Antonio Rubio for the interim WBC title. An interim title holder is then given the opportunity to face the regular champion. The champion at the time was Miguel Cotto. GGG and his team gave Cotto an exception to fight another opponent first and stepped aside for a nice fee. Cotto would lose the WBC middleweight title against Canelo Alvarez while GGG would pick up the IBF title in a unification match with David Lemieux.
For a number of reasons, the WBC would then grant Canelo an exception before he too had to face GGG. In addition to the ruling, it has been made unmistakably clear for the third time that no more exceptions would be granted and the winner of the upcoming Canelo-Khan fight on May 7th will then have 15 days to either negotiate a fight with GGG or vacate the title, thus elevating GGG to full champion. But would that be such a bad thing if Canelo sidestepped GGG once again? As much as I would like to see the fight I’m starting to see the brighter side of things if he doesn’t.
Follow me if you will, but the options for both boxers are rather bright in a theoretical sense that would not only make for great fights in the interim but also raise the anticipation for an eventual GGG-Canelo showdown.
For Canelo, he has one option that would make for a better PPV success than that of a Triple G showdown; Manny Pacquiao. Even though Manny is at the end of his career and called it quits after his latest win earlier this month against Timothy Bradley, nobody believes him. Even if we did, Manny looked sensational in his win, scoring two knockdowns and keeping up the tempo for the majority of the fight, thus showing us he still has some gas in the tank.
A perennial PPV attraction like Manny Pacquiao going up against the heir apparent in Canelo Alvarez would create massive intrigue. The only stumbling block I foresee beyond the little detail of retirement is the weight. Manny is a 147lb welterweight who’s only once fought above that limit, while Canelo is currently fighting at 155lbs and rehydrating close to 170lbs on fight night. A catchweight will be needed and from what we’ve heard Canelo’s team say in regards to fighting GGG at the middleweight limit of 160lbs, he doesn’t want to budge from 155lbs. Maybe the lure of millions of dollars and a legacy defining win against a future Hall of Famer will loosen up the negotiations enough for him to shed a couple pounds for Pacquiao.
For Triple G, he has two solid potential opponents that will hopefully take him up on his challenge. Public enemy #2 in Golovkin’s eyes, right behind Canelo, is WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders. Saunders, of England, won the title by defeating Irishman Andy Lee. Lee for his part said he would’ve been ready and willing to take a unification match against GGG had he beaten Saunders. Saunders for his part, has turned down a career payday to face GGG- though lately he’s been under that spotlight we mentioned earlier and has somewhat loosened his tone. Should Saunders change his mind this summer, a sold out stadium filled with tens of thousands of screaming Brits could see GGG more than likely unify another title in the middleweight division and probably see him do so in a KO type of fashion.
Not only would GGG have another title in his collection to add to the intrigue of a Canelo showdown, but now he’s sold out a stadium filled with one of boxings most loyal fanbases in the British. That fact adds more potential PPV buyers in the future and a larger, more global following for GGG.
The second option in my opinion is the most intriguing. The WBA President was in attendance last night at The Forum for another “Big Drama Show” from GGG and stated emphatically that he would look to enforce their WBA “Regular” champion Daniel Jacobs to unify with their “Super Champion” GGG, should Canelo pass on his WBC obligations. Daniel Jacobs is easily the most threatening challenge to GGG and is a full fledged middleweight, unlike Canelo.
With a nice following of his own, Jacobs and GGG would be able to sell out the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the hometown of Jacobs. The disclaimer here is Jacobs could do like Canelo and vacate the title to avoid the GGG showdown. There’s even been rumors that Jacobs and Saunders have been in negotiations to fight each other, thus they could both escape the wrath of Triple G!
While unifying the WBA isn’t as necessary as say unifying the division with the WBO and WBC belts, Jacobs does offer GGG the big name he’s been looking for and it raises his own level of competition. Jacobs is no slouch. He bulldozed through Peter Quillin in less than a round to capture one of the WBA’s versions of a middleweight title. Anticipation would be high and so would the payoff in further establishing who’s the best middleweight in the division should Golovkin and Jacobs square up.
Now let the chef’s at No Sparring take over: you take a dash of Canelo beating Amir Khan in May, and follow that up with a drop of GGG unifying the WBO title against Saunders. Mix in a Canelo KO of Pacquiao and a GGG win in NYC. Stir it up and let it sit for 6 months and voila! You got yourselves a massive PPV show that the whole world will watch.
In a perfect world GGG would face Saunders in the summer, Jacobs this winter and Canelo next spring. Winning all three makes GGG the superstar we know he’s on the verge of becoming. The next step is to wait and see what happens with Canelo in the coming weeks. Regardless, GGG and his team have a hit list and if you’re on it there’s only two ways to get off; step inside the ring or “just gimme the belts” as he would say after he finished off Wade last night in the 2nd round.