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Gennady Golovkin: Is 'GGG' becoming too enamored with his power?

Joseph Herron Updated
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On the most recent episode of HBO's "The Fight Game with Jim Lampley", the renowned blow-by-blow commentator and show's host spent a good portion of the thirty minute program discussing Gennady Golovkin's impressive, October18, knock-out victory over Marco Antonio Rubio in front of a sold out StubHub Center in Carson, California.

While it's difficult to detract from the native Kazakh's accomplishments in and out of the ring so far, some experienced fight scribes and boxing insiders are pointing to a potentially dangerous trend in Golovkin's most recent performances.

In an post fight interview with boxing scribe Rodney Green, Gennady's head trainer, Abel Sanchez, disclosed an area of concern regarding his star fighter's latest effort.

"I was taken aback by how tight Gennady was early in the first round," stated the prolific fight trainer. "He wanted to finish things quickly, and he was throwing a lot of wide, looping shots as a result."

"I asked him between rounds to start working more behind his jab while using feints to set up his punches more intelligently. He did in the second round, and it gave him the opportunity to land that hook over the top which consequently knocked Rubio out."

Even though a dramatic knock-out finish always seems to capture the imagination of the casual and mainstream sports fan, is there a legitimate reason to be concerned about Gennady's willingness to consistently put himself in a vulnerable position while attempting to deliver his own brand of punishment?

In Gennady Golovkin's last two performances, against Daniel Geale and Marco Antonio Rubio, the current WBA Middleweight Champion seemed all too eager to close the show in style without regard to his technical prowess.

Three decade fight trainer and expert fight strategist James Gogue states that the gallant but risky fight tactic could prove to be disastrous as Golovkin's level of opposition continues to improve.

"I've seen this all too many times throughout boxing's rich history," claims the proficient boxing mentor.

"Guys with sound, technical skills and great athleticism, like Mike Tyson and Tommy Hearns, will become enamored with their own power and abandon their technical ability as a result."

Boxing genius James Gogue, right, with Ronnie Shields


"They start relying too heavily on their power and ultimately forget about technique. Fighters can get away with that when they're facing good but not great competition.

But when they finally step in the ring with fighters at the elite level, it almost always doesn't end well."

Although Gogue was very impressed with Golovkin's more methodical and measured approach against hard punching contenders Curtis Stevens and Matthew Macklin, the knowledgeable boxing coach observes his latest ring efforts to be potentially hazardous.

"When you look at Tyson's rise to super stardom, he showed brilliant upper body and head movement while maneuvering himself in punching range. He had a very underrated defense and showed great skill as he was moving up in the rankings."

"Iron Mike's legendary fight manager and trainer, Cus D'amato, always warned him that there would be someone at the elite level who would be able to take his best punch. His words turned out to be prophetic. Iron Mike became complacent with his success and fell into the trap of trying to land one bomb at a time instead of setting up his punches intelligently. It proved to be disastrous for his career."

"If Gennady isn't mindful of this common trap among devastating punchers, he could fall into the same mistakes when his level of competition increases."

Despite bringing attention to this potentially problematic trend, the three decade boxing strategist doesn't see any of these threats currently lingering in the 160 pound weight division.

"Even though Gennady Golovkin could experience problems somewhere down the road if he continues to rely too heavily on his power, I don't see anyone currently within the Middleweight division giving him many problems...not Martin Murray, Peter Quillin, Danny Jacobs, or Miguel Cotto."

"But this tendency among knock-out artists is definitely something to which he should be mindful. It would be a shame if that were to happen to such a technically gifted fighter like Gennady Golovkin, who has the potential to be one of boxing's biggest stars."


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