Gennady Golovkin Criticizes Floyd Mayweather's Style, Discusses Boxing Heroes

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistFebruary 14, 2016

NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 17:  Gennady Golovkin celebrates his eigth round tko against  David Lemieux during their WBA/WBC interim/IBF middleweight title unification bout at Madison Square Garden on October 17, 2015 in New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

Gennady Golovkin, the unified middleweight champion, spoke to Boxing News magazine's John Dennen about his opinion on Floyd Mayweather Jr.'s fighting style, the boxers who have inspired him and more in an interview: 

I don’t have heroes and idols. There are a lot of great champions, a lot of great styles. The middleweight division: Sugar Ray Robinson, Carlos Monzon, Hagler, [Ray] Leonard, a lot of great champions with different styles. Muhammad Ali was like the king. Mike Tyson was a different style, a different time. The same as Floyd [Mayweather]: I don’t like his style, [but no one] ever beat him. Rocky Marciano was a great champion, they never beat him, just a different time.

Golovkin is likely referring to Mayweather's tendency to fight defensively by using his excellent speed and anticipation to avoid getting hit while methodically and surgically picking apart his opponent's defense. It's a style that some boxing fans have lamented as boring, but it has certainly been effective for the undefeated Mayweather, as Golovkin acknowledged.

He then continued to praise some of the greats in the sport.

“I don’t have idols, I respect all great champions, because sometimes I’m going to the WBC or WBA conventions, and there’s a lot of great champions," Golovkin noted. "Everybody has a big story, a great story, like Evander Holyfield, Larry Holmes, [Julio Cesar] Chavez Senior, Roberto Duran. He’s great, his time was an amazing time."

Golovkin (34-0) is one of the most feared boxers of the current generation, winning 21 straight matchups by knockout. That's a chilling stat for his next opponent, as he'll defend his middleweight title against the undefeated Dominic Wade (18-0) on April 23.

Of course, for many fans of the sport, the dream matchup has long been Mayweather vs. Golovkin, but that seems like a pipe dream at this point considering Money's plans to remain retired.


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