GGG Brings Down The Curtain On Showtime In A Theater
Added by Luis Vazquez on November 4, 2013.
Gennady Golovkin is the champion everyone wants to fight. He is deemed the most beatable of the current four middleweight boxing champions. However, after Saturday night’s dismantling of Curtis Stevens in eight rounds, the experts may want to take a second look at this fighter from Karaganda, Kazakhstan. The fight event billed as “Monster’s Collide” promised action and a clash of power punchers.
The pre-fight tour saw an often intense looking Stevens looking to play into that mindset while and a smiling Gennady was unfazed. Initially if you judged on looks alone, one would have thought that Curtis, unbeaten at 160 pounds, would run through GGG. This was a curious thought considering that Golovkin took a 27-0, 24 KO record into this evening. His dismantling of Matthew Macklin should have provided a clue. “I respect everyone in the sport. This is a sport for me first.”
When the fight started Curtis looked apprehensive and his “cutting the throat” sign did not look that convincing once he was in the ring. GGG looked inflated and had that focused look in his eyes. The first round was a feeling out process. Gennady was wary, respectful, looking for openings, while Stevens kept a closed tight defense and looked for counterpunching opportunities. What became apparent was that Curtis, compact and short armed, was going to have trouble getting off first against the long armed and as quick Gennady and it was confirmed in the opening mix.
The second round saw the rapid jab of GGG make its introduction. The speed and precise nature of it found its way through Steven’s defense often. Finally in the middle of the ring came the explosion. As Golovkin probed in ring center with a right cross, he followed by ducking low and coming over with a solid left hook which caught Curtis flush and as he fell a step back, another left hook straight to the head knocked Steven’s to the mat with feet flying in the air and a wide-eyed look of surprise on his face that said everything about GGG’s power. “I know I’m champion, I know I’m better. People know who’s who.” said Gennady post fight.
(Photo by Marlene Amaya-Vazquez)
The bell saved Steven’s and he spent the third round in defensive mode moving away as Golovkin stalked and collected points but for all practical purposes took the foot off the gas. That would hurt Gennady as the fourth began, Gennady went to work scoring with crosses and hooks as he outmuscled Stevens and near the end of the round he drove him to retreat against the ropes where he continued landing a series of blows but then Curtis started catching Gennady with quick short right crosses, and one in particular caught his attention. One left hook loosed Gennady’s legs for an instant and then Steven’s drove Gennady back across the ring to the ropes as the U.S. members of the audience rose for the first time. Stevens forced his way through Gennady to close out his first winning round. When asked if he was hurt, Gennady gave a full second and said, “No, not really.” smiling knowingly.
The fifth saw Curtis take the momentum into this round and Gennady looked arm weary suddenly. The moment to turn this fight was now. But Gennady recalled the strategy his trainer kept pounding in his ear. “Not crazy fight, not street fight, just box.” I said, “Of course coach, here’s my box.” He held his ground and gave back hard right crosses and matched stiff jabs from long range snapping Curtis head back often. The round ended with Stevens retreating to the ropes again as the bell rang and Gennady smelling blood.
The sixth frame saw both fighters stand toe to toe and mix inside and Steven’s temporary advantages were quickly removed as Gennady jab was quick again and set all openings from head to body with the heavy artillery. A heavy hook to the side followed by a crunching right cross through the gloves was an exclamation point to Gennady’s growing dominance.
In the seventh Stevens stubbornly tried to exchange head to head in ring center but again Gennady crashed through with hooks and crosses in combo to hurt him and drive him back. Gennady trapped him in the corners and ropes and Steven’s single counter attempts were not able to stem the tide.
The final round off the fight was the last as Gennady pushed Curtis around in the inside and hooked and crossed him as his left eye started puffing up and halfway through Gennady scored left hooks to the sides that caused Steven’s to backtrack again and Gennady pursued him looking to land it again which he did twice more until he drove Stevens back landing a flurry of blows until the bell intervened. The referee waved the fight over as Curtis stood in his corner.
After the fight Gennady mentioned how much Steven’s words infuriated him. “You know my last question I asked him. “You’re serious, you’re serious, I’m serious.” He also called out Sergio Martinez, the WBC champion. As his fans cheered him post fight Max Kellerman asked who Gennady wants next. “I’m champion, I’m open for everybody.” When asked to name one he replied, “Sergio Martinez.”
On the undercard Mike Perez (20-0, 12 KO’s) defeated the previously unbeaten Magomed Abdusalamov (18-1, 18 KO’s) by unanimous ten round decision 95-94, 97-92, and 97-92 to win the US NBC Championship. The IBO cruiserweight crown was won by Ola Afolabi as he captured a tedious 12 round majority decision.
Dusty Harrison stayed unbeaten in his eighteenth fight by taking a spirited 10 round decision winning the WBC Welterweight Youth Title 98-92 on all cards. Joel Diaz Jr. improved to 13-0 11 KO’s by taking a tougher than expected 6 round decision over Byrne Green (7-7-1) 60-52 on all cards in a Jr. Lightweight bout. The two knockdowns was the winning difference. Isa Akbarabayev, the Bumble Bee, speed and agility and hand speed impressed in winning his cruiserweight battle by 4 round decision over Brian Clookey (4-1-2).