Kazakh world middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin will not return to the ring this June and instead hopes to fight the winner of Canelo Alvarez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in September.
Golovkin was "close to a deal" to fight Britain's Billy Joe Saunders on June 10 in Golovkin's home country, but that is no longer on the cards, per Dan Rafael for ESPN.
"Gennady is not going [to] fight in June," K2 Promotions managing director Tom Loeffler said, per Rafael. "It was a quick turnaround after the Jacobs fight, and we would have liked to have done a fight with Billy Joe Saunders, but it was just too quick of a turnaround."
The exhausting nature of Golovkin's fight with Jacobs, which went the full distance and was awarded to the Kazakh by the judges, has made an early return implausible. Golovkin hadn't previously gone to the last in 24 fights.
Loeffler explained why competing just three months later was not an option, particularly after his potential opponent wanted to move the date of their fight.
"Gennady would have had to be in training two weeks ago already, but he went 12 hard rounds with Jacobs," he said, per Rafael. "There was also a question on the date. Frank wanted to move the date up a week. He wanted to go earlier in June."
Many fans will be disappointed not to see Golovkin box in his home country, but this may turn out to be good news for the sport. Playing the victor of next week's Alvarez vs. Chavez fight is a considerably more attractive proposition for neutrals.