By Rick Reeno
Las Vegas - Beyond his upcoming fight, Gennady Golovkin (38-0-1, 34 KOs) is leaning in the direction of WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders (26-0, 12 KOs) as the opponent of choice.
Golovkin will defend his WBC, WBA, IBO world titles against Canelo Alvarez in a rematch, which takes place on September 15th from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Saunders is scheduled to fight in the fall - with September 15th being rumored as the date, and super middleweight James DeGale being whispered as the opponent.
During the emotional negotiations between Golovkin and Canelo - at one point their discussions fell apart and GGG reached an agreement to fight Saunders on August 25th in Los Angeles. However, Golovkin and Canelo would eventually come to terms and finalize the contract for their rematch.
Should he beat Canelo, there are several options on the table - WBC mandatory challenger Jermall Charlo, WBA 'regular' champion Ryota Murata, and Saunders.
"[Who would I prefer to fight next?] I think that is a question more for my promoter, Tom [Loeffler]. I have a lot of demands. I think the WBC has a challenger [Charlo]. I think the WBA has Murata. At this point, probably Saunders... why not. I want all my belts. My goal is all my belts," Golovkin said.
Because Golovkin went forward with the Canelo rematch, instead of defending his IBF middleweight crown against mandatory Sergiy Derevyanchenko, the sanctioning body stripped him of the title.
Now the IBF has ordered Derevyanchenko and Daniel Jacobs to fight each other for the vacant belt.
The fight is a little awkward, because the two boxers share the same manager and they share same trainer in Andre Rozier.
Golovkin views their contest as being too close to call.
"This is a very hard question... the same managers, the same coaches, a lot of sparrings together... I think 50-50," Golovkin said.