by Cliff Rold
Last week was about a star in the making. The same is the case one week later. One of boxing’s classic divisions, Middleweight, has its potential heir apparent.
Or does it?
HBO might have the answer to that in a week where Middleweight takes center stage on US TV with some intrigue on Telemundo as well.
These are the picks of the week.
Pick It: #2 Gennady Golovkin vs. #8 Matthew Macklin (Saturday, HBO, 9:45 PM EST/PST)
For all the potential the former Olympic medalist shows, Golovkin (26-0, 23 KO) has room for criticism. His foes haven’t been of the highest caliber; his WBA belt is as paper as it gets. On the former, he’s struggled to get bigger names in the ring. The latter? Well, yeah, but eventually he may get a crack at the real thing. Middleweight king Sergio Martinez is out there. A win here and Golovkin is a big step closer to that shot. Macklin (29-4, 20 KO) was a solid challenge for Martinez and should have had a win against Felix Sturm. Recalling Golovkin’s struggles with Kasim Ouma, could it be that Golovkin is less than he looks? If he is, Macklin might be the man to show it. Conversely, an impressive win here could pick up some converts on a growing bandwagon.
Pick More Middle: Sergio Mora vs. Gregorz Proksa (Friday, ESPN2, 9 PM EST/6 PM PST)
If there is a win Golovkin can point to as ample evidence of already being where his talent suggests, it’s his win over Proksa (29-2, 21 KO). He ran over the talented Pole in just five rounds. Proksa, quick handed and with a punch, gets a spoiler of a foe this week but one whom he might just drag a fight out of. Former Jr. Middleweight titlist Sergio Mora (23-3-2, 7 KO) is 2-3-1 in his last six starts. That’s not good. Neither is the fact that the mark dates back to September 2008. Even by the anemic activity levels of today, it’s poor activity. Mora, the winner of Season One of the Contender, never really took advantage of the show the way he could have. Is this his end of the road?
Pick Oldies: Joan Guzman vs. Vicente Mosquera (Friday, Telemundo, 11:35 PM EST/PST)
Sometimes, these late night clashes between old warhorses work out well. This one has the makings. The erratic Guzman (33-1-1, 20 KO) has blown some chances over the years but keeps plugging along and won belts in two classes. He finally lost in his last outing and needs a win here. Mosquera didn’t fight for five years after losing his 130 lb. title to Edwin Valero in 2006. He’s won eight in a row since returning in 2011. This is so worth at least a DVRing.
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Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene and a member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, the Yahoo Pound for Pound voting panel, and the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at [email protected]