Gennady Golovkin and David Lemieux will be fighting for more than a middleweight title on October 17, as the winner will get a marquee match against the victor of November's Canelo Alvarez-Miguel Cotto showdown.
Per Michael Woods of TheSweetScience.com, citing managing director of K2 Promotions Tom Loeffler, the WBC mandated the winner of Golovkin-Lemieux gets Alvarez or Cotto.
Golovkin and Lemieux have been building toward a moment in the spotlight for years. Lemieux is a budding star at 26 years old, boasting a 34-2 career record with 31 knockouts, and he's riding a nine-fight winning streak.
Golovkin is 33-0 with 30 knockouts, including stoppages in each of his last 20 bouts, and he has been WBA middleweight champion for five years.
Unfortunately for Golovkin, as noted by ESPN.com's Dan Rafael when the fight with Lemieux was finalized, being such a lethal puncher has made it difficult for him to be able to unify the middleweight titles:
Golovkin's fan base has grown quickly since he came to fight for the first time in the United States in 2012, as he stormed through a series of top contenders... Now, he and Lemieux will fight on pay-per-view for the first time, but fight organizers have high hopes because of Golovkin's burgeoning fan base, reputation as must-see TV and the fact that he has a serious opponent in front of him.
Boxing is in an interesting spot right now. Floyd Mayweather will fight Andre Berto on September 12 in what is still being sold as his final bout before retiring. Manny Pacquiao is still recovering from the shoulder injury that hampered him against Mayweather.
The sport needs to find new, marketable stars with Mayweather and Pacquiao nearing the end of their respective careers. Golovkin and Lemieux are on the right track leading into their matchup and can move further into the stratosphere with a matchup against Alvarez or Cotto presumably in 2016.