The Week That Was: Golovkin, Walters, Eubank Jr.

By Kurt Ward

Two things are certain in this life, but I think we can now add a third to join death and taxes and that is WBA/IBO middleweight title-holder Gennady Golovkin, 31-0 (28), winning by knockout.  His second-round stoppage over the usually durable Mexican Marco Antonio Rubio, 59-7-1 (51), was Golovkin's 18th in a row, a stat that stretches back to 2008 where a man named Amar Amari saw the final bell of an eight rounder.

After the fight Golovkin called out current lineal middleweight champion Miguel Cotto, 39-4 (32), but with plans to match the Puero Rican with young Mexican star Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez, 44-1-1- (31), it seems the wait will have to go on for Golovkin as he and his team chase the big fights that fans want to see him in.  The scheduled return for the active Golovkin is February in Monte Carlo with two-time world title challenger Martin Murray the most likely opponent.

There are some great fights out there for the German based Kazakh.  England's Carl Froch, currently holding two titles 8lbs north, has been mentioned.  As has Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., the son of the Mexican legend who seems to be eating himself to heavyweight while he tries to settle a dispute with promoter Bob Arum over his current deal.  Chavez hasn't been seen in a ring for seven months and currently has no date for a return.

It is hard to see any fighter at middleweight being able to deal with Golovkin as it stands right now.  Only someone with a serious dislike of current IBF title-holder Jermain Taylor would want to see him in the ring with Golovkin and it's hard to imagine Matt Korobov or Andy Lee, who are fighting for the vacant WBO strap in December, being viewed as serious threats.  A move north will surely be an option Golovkin and his team explore in 2015 even if it is for one fight only.

It was also great to see the fans turning out to see one of the most exciting fighters in the sport.  A record crowd of 9,323 packed out the StubHub in California to see the latest knockout victory for Golovkin, who also had many Mexicans in the crowd cheering him to victory.

It must be annoying and deeply frustrating for Andre Ward, 27-0 (14), the brilliant super middleweight from Oakland, to watch Golovkin become such a star in Ward's home state while he sits on the shelf due to promotional issues.

Since comfortably outpointing Carl Froch in the final of the Showtime super six boxing tournament in December 2011, Ward has fought just twice.  Golovkin, meanwhile, has been in action nine times.  Ward's last fight at the StubHub—then called the Home Depot Center—against Arthur Abraham in 2011 only had 5,311 in attendance.  It's a testament to how well K2 promotions, the promoters of Golovkin, have done over the last couple of years in keeping their man active.

We have a new star in the featherweight division and his name is Nicholas Walters, 25-0 (21).  The man from Montego Bay enhanced his reputation as a power puncher after being the first man to stop the former four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire, 33-3 (21).  Walters has now stopped 11 of his last 12 opponents and was too strong, too big and, quite frankly, too good for Donaire.  Promoter Bob Arum now has eyes on a unification fight between Walters and former amateur star, and current WBO title-holder, Vasyl Lomachenko, 2-1 (1).

Let's hope Bob can get it made instead of leaving it to marinate.

Donaire will probably go back down to 122lbs, but it's tough to say how much he has left in the sport. Since losing comfortably to the excellent Cuban Guillermo Rigondeaux in 2013 Donaire has struggled to find the form that saw him dominate opponents as he moved through the weights.

Chris Eubank Jr., along with his father, held a press conference in the week that was crashed by Billy Joe Saunders on Skype (that's the modern world for you).  The pair will clash on the excellent November 29 bill headlined by the rematch between Tyson Fury and Dereck Chisora.

Strangely, despite the biggest fight of his career being only a month away, Eubank Jr., 17-0 (12), will compete on a show from Liverpool on October 25.  Saunders, 20-0 (11), quite understandably, was concerned about his opponent suffering an injury that would rule him out of their grudge match and offered Eubank £20,000 to pull out of the Liverpool show to make sure he was fit and healthy for November.  The offer was politely rejected.

Chris Sr., in speaking to, didn't seem too concerned about his son's upcoming fight with young Saunders and chose to instead discuss his son's chances against Gennady Golovkin.

"I believe Christopher can take a punch," commented Eubank.  "I'm very good at maths, looking at a fighter and seeing what his abilities are and I don't think Golovkin has anything like Christopher's speed, his power, his punching ability, hand speed or his foot-movement.  So then it's going to come down to heart and he has my deoxyribonucleic acid (D.N.A to you and me)."

Eubank didn't stop there, he continued: "I think he (Chris Jr) is the next Floyd Mayweather Jr.  He has the irrepressibility of a young Roberto Duran.  The fearlessness and walk down ability of James Toney.  The hand speed of a prime Roy Jones Jr."

As a fan it's great to see Chris Sr. back in the sport through his son.  It is going to fun seeing how his son develops and hearing the father's views on the subject.  One thing, though, I do wish Chris S.r would talk up his son a bit more and give him a little more credit.

Catch Kurt and his fellow panelists every Sunday at 8.30pm BST/3.30pm EST for the live boxing podcast here

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