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Gennady Golovkin vs Curtis Stevens
Head to Head : Gennady Golovkin vs Curtis Stevens live
Competition : Middleweight Championship boxing
Location : Madison Square Garden Theater, NYC, NY, USA.
Live / Repeat: Live
TV : HBO
Round : 12 rounds
Fight date : Saturday, 12th October 2013
Time: 10:00 pm ET
“Macklin was a scared puppy dog, in my eyes,” Stevens said. “I’m coming there ready. I’m not scared, obviously, because I asked for the fight. The fight wasn’t given to me by [Golovkin promoter] K2 or Main Events [which promotes Stevens]. I asked for this. I wanted it, so I believe what you all have to understand is that I am not scared of him. I don’t care what he did to his last four opponents, five opponents. I am not them in any way, shape or form. So I’m ready.”
Golovkin left the trash talk to trainer Abel Sanchez, who has worked with his share of top fighters, most notably Hall of Famer Terry Norris.
Sanchez said what Golovkin doesn’t seem to want to say — that they believe Saturday’s fight will be easier than the obliteration of Macklin.
“It will be an explosive, quick fight,” Sanchez said. “When you’re fighting a guy like Stevens, you have to be wary of the fact that he supposedly can punch. But he doesn’t know what a puncher is until he gets hit by this guy [Golovkin]. Macklin is a better fighter than Stevens, a tougher fighter than Stevens. Macklin is just an all-around better fighter, been in bigger fights. If you saw the [Derrick] Findley fight [an eight-round decision in April], Curtis is a mutt.
“This will be shorter than the Macklin fight, because if Stevens does what he says he’s gonna do — that he’s coming at us — if he comes at us, he’s through.”
Golovkin was sitting right next to Sanchez when his trainer made the bold remarks. Asked what he thought of what Sanchez said, Golovkin’s answer was simple: “I want to knock him out. This guy? Too much talking.”
Stevens has heard Sanchez’s comments and dismissed them.
“Abel talks a lot, you know,” Stevens said. “Abel will say, yes, it’s not going to go past three rounds or Gennady isn’t going to box, but in the back of their minds their game plan probably is coming here to run and do the European-style fighting. If Gennady comes in there and runs, [it's] because he knows if I touch him, his ass might go night-night.”
Gennady Golovkin vs. Curtis Stevens will take place at The Theater at Madison Square Garden Saturday night, and the WBA Middleweight Championship will be on the line.
Golovkin—who will be making the ninth defense of his title—is considered by many to be the baddest man in the sport. He has fearsome punching power, which has made it difficult for him to land significant fights, and he is at worst the second-best middleweight on the planet. None of the top dogs at 160 pounds seem in a hurry to face him, and with good reason.
Steven is a local kid who grew up in Brooklyn and will be fighting in front of a hometown crowd. Like Golovkin, he is known for his huge punching power, and he has refused to be intimidated by his foes resume, record or reputation. This will be his first challenge for a world title.
This is one of those fights where you don’t want to blink. It could end at any moment. Here we set you up right for the big fight with our complete preview and prediction for Gennady Golovkin vs. Curtis Stevens.
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WBA middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (27-0, 24 KO’s) successfully weighed in for his fight tomorrow night against Curtis Stevens (25-3, 18 KO’s) at the Madison Square Garden Theater, in New York, New York, USA. The 5’10 1/2? Golovkin weighed in at 159.6 lbs., and the 5’7? Stevens came in at 159.25 lbs.
This could be the most difficult title defense for Golovkin since his war against Kassim Ouma in June of 2011. That fight was by far the toughest of Golovkin’s career as he took a lot of punishment from Ouma until finally stopping him in the 10th round.
Golovkin has improved since then by developing an inside game and becoming a dangerous body puncher. But if he’s forced to trade on the inside against the shorter Stevens then this could be a pick em’ fight because Stevens is a murderous puncher in close and he does a great job of putting his shots together.
In the co-feature, unbeaten heavyweights Magomed Abdusalamov (18-0, 18 KO’s) and Mike Perez (19-0, 12 KO’s) will be putting their undefeated records on the line. Abdusalamov weighed in at 231.6 lbs., and Perez at 235.8 lbs. This is a really difficult fight to predict because both fighters are so good. Abdusalamov, 32, is a big puncher capable of knocking an opponent out with either hand. None of his previous opposition has made it to the final bell, and that shows you the kind of power that he has. Perez has excellent power to, but he’s very skilled and capable of throwing a lot of punches. He doesn’t have the same height or power that Abdusalamov has going for him, but he more than makes up for it with his nonstop attacking style. Perez will have to walk through a lot of hard punches from Abdusalamov if he’s going to want to win this fight.
The fight card will be televised by HBO tomorrow night.
Official Weights from New York:
Gennady Golovkin: 159.6 lbs.
Curtis Stevens: 159.25 lbs.
Mike Perez: 235.8 lbs.
Magomed Abdusalamov: 231.6 lbs.
Gennady Golovkin faces Curtis Stevens in a matchup of power punchers tomorrow night on HBO. Will Golovkin stay undefeated, or can Stevens make a case for Upset of the Year?
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This isn’t a competitive match-up. Quite frankly I’m shocked we’re even doing predictions for this fight. Stevens gets demolished. In a career that has lasted nearly a decade Stevens doesn’t even have wins on his resume a level below GGG. And his losses are telling even if he’s improved since then. But how significantly improved could he possibly be considering he’s still not a disciplined fighter outside of the ring? I don’t even see a single physical or mental advantage he has inside of it. And obviously Stevens can’t win on experience. Golovkin KO-2
Stevens has a puncher’s chance and nothing more. He’s not a better boxer than Golovkin. Really, there’s nothing he does better than Golovkin. But he also punches like a mule kicks, and if he cracks the sometimes defensively vulnerable Golovkin with one of his left hooks, this thing could be over before Golovkin knows what hit him. GGG is on another level, though. Unless there’s a big shot that can end it early for the upset, Stevens is going to be smashed by a vastly superior fighter. Golovkin TKO-3
Fraser Coffeen, BloodyElbow.com
I see a lot of this being determined by how Stevens plays it. Like Golovkin, his punching power is a selling point, and it’s that power that has brought him to the fight Saturday. A lot of Stevens’ own pre-fight talk has been focused on that power and how he’s going to KO GGG. If he tries to do that, it goes poorly for him. Stevens does have power, but Golovkin has more power. More to the point, Golovkin is deceptively good at getting people into position to use his power. He sets up those power shots with combos and then makes you pay. If Stevens gets into a firefight, I think he’ll be surprised by Golovkin’s technical skills, and will find himself quickly outgunned. Now, can Stevens avoid that firefight and make it an actual boxing match? Yes, but that seems like it just delays the inevitable, though it is his best bet. With a very well thought out gameplan, he can push Golovkin hard – but I don’t think that’s the way Stevens fights this fight, and I think it costs him early. Golovkin KO-3
They say boxing is all about levels, and this looks like a case in point. While we’re regurgitating old boxing adages, here’s another: in a match-up of punchers, you have to favor the better boxer. While there’s, realistically, not an awful lot of difference in terms of quality between the ugly miscellany of knockout victims strewn across each guy’s record, it’s hard to argue that Golovkin isn’t the superior fighter of the two, the Kellerman-patented Next Level Talent. In truth, although he’s had his critics for ramping up slowly, the Kazakh edges it there too, as the wrecked chassis of Matthew Macklin can attest, in addition to a demolition of Gabriel Rosado that looks better still after his efforts last weekend.
It’s questionable whether Stevens is any better a boxer than either Macklin or Rosado, but what is clear is that neither have anything remotely approaching the show-stopping, HBO-attracting power Stevens does. Golovkin’s footwork and overall ring generalship is something to behold, but he can be hit, and, above all, he’s human. If Stevens connects with that left hook how he’d like – and he may need just the one – it’s hard to envisage Golovkin, or anyone else at 160, standing up to it.
We won’t have seen the last of Stevens at this level after Saturday night, but Golovkin isn’t as short as a 1-25 favorite for no reason here. It’s hard to see how this winds up being anything other than explosive, and it’s probably not going to last long. Golovkin TKO-3
Stevens isn’t the best guy Golovkin has fought so far, but he’s the most dangerous. Any time an aggressive fighter goes up against an opponent with a good left hook, there’s always the possibility of stepping into a devastating shot. We saw that earlier this year, when 7 to 1 longshot Jhonny Gonzalez shocked Abner Mares. So while my prediction is Golovkin in a very one sided fight, I’m still going to take a chance on the big odds, and take Stevens in the BLH pick’em game. Golovkin TKO-7
It should be a good fight whilst it lasts, but I can’t see it lasting too long. There’s a big gulf in class between the pair, Stevens is a solid B level fighter, whereas Golovkin proved last time out against Macklin that he’s an elite level fighter. Macklin’s as tough as they come but was blasted out in merciless fashion.
It’d be nice to see Golovkin’s chin tested for once, and Stevens can bang a bit, but apart from Stevens landing the most perfect punch of his career, it’s hard to envisage a way in which he can win the fight. Golovkin should be too quick, too talented and too heavy handed for Stevens. I expect the end to come within four explosive rounds. Golovkin
Gennady Golovkin and Curtis Stevens are good to go for tomorrow night’s HBO main event in New York.
Gennady Golovkin and Curtis Stevens both made weight this afternoon for tomorrow night’s HBO main event from the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City, where they’ll fight for Golovkin’s WBA middleweight title.
Golovkin (27-0, 24 KO) weighed in at 159.6 pounds, with Stevens (25-3, 18 KO) coming in at 159.25 pounds, both just under the 160-pound limit. Both men looked in great shape physically and ready to go for tomorrow night’s fight.
In the co-feature, heavyweights Mike Perez (19-0, 12 KO) and Magomed Abdusalamov (18-0, 18 KO) are set for a 10-round battle. Perez weighed in at 235.8 pounds, a bit heavier than Abdusalamov, who came in at 231.6 pounds for the fight.
Live coverage will start tomorrow night at 10:00 pm EDT, and make sure you check back later this evening for staff picks from the BLH crew. And if you haven’t signed up for our Golovkin-Stevens Sweepstakes, there’s still a little time!
American fight fans heard of Gennady Golovkin before many got to see him in action. An amateur star out of Kazakhstan, tales of his gym displays, including sparring brutality against the likes of Canelo Alvarez, made the rounds before he was ever televised on U.S. TV.
Now, Golovkin is an unlikely building block in a rebuilding phase for HBO. While the network still does routinely higher ratings than its competitors at Showtime, the fact is that Showtime is now a fierce, actual rival, rather than an also-ran featuring a lot of second-tier (if often highly exciting) fighters. Working closely with Golden Boy Promotions, Showtime has made enormous strides this year in building a boxing brand, and with Floyd Mayweather locked in for four more fights, that doesn’t seem likely to change any time soon.
HBO is in no desperate or dire situation, though. Their “fall” has been greatly exaggerated, but while that is a fact, it’s also a fact that when they decided to no longer do any business with Golden Boy or Al Haymon fighters, they were putting themselves in a position where they needed new stars, and those would have to come from inside the Top Rank stable, or the second-tier and international promoters.
Golovkin, 31, fights for the Klitschko brothers’ K2 Promotions, hardly a force in the States. But the hard-hitting “GGG” is a force of nature to the point that someone was bound to sit up and take notice. Luckily, HBO had some openings in 2012, and Golovkin was featured in a Boxing After Dark main event against Poland’s Grzegorz Proksa.
Nobody watched the show, as it did a pitiful number in the ratings, but those who did started to spread the word: Golovkin was must-see TV, as he took care of the game but outclassed Proksa in five rounds, scoring knockdowns in the first, fourth, and fifth frames.
Though Golovkin (27-0, 24 KO) has yet to face a truly top-level middleweight, few seem to care. Like the aforementioned Canelo, he’s a phenom that captures fan interest, though for different reasons. Alvarez, with his red hair and precociousness, fights out of Mexico, arguably still the most boxing-mad culture in the world. A built-in fanbase was there, ready to be plucked by an intriguing fighter like that, and Alvarez has become the biggest star in Mexican boxing because he’s done all the right things to take make those fans his fans.
Golovkin, a Kazakh fighter with fairly limited English, didn’t have such luxuries to become a Stateside star. With his entire career being fought in Germany, Panama, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine prior to the Proksa fight, Golovkin was more myth than anything, which was not to say his talent was doubted by those who had seen him, but relatively few had in fact seen him at work. And with no star power or name value, top middleweights weren’t exactly lining up to face him. Felix Sturm notably avoided a fight, as did Hassan N’dam.
That meant that the most notable names on Golovkin’s ledger were Kassim Ouma, who was well past his best days, Lajuan Simon, and Ian Gardner. It wasn’t “who’s who” on his résumé, but “who’s that?”
The Proksa fight planted the seed. In January of this year, Golovkin got a slot on a Top Rank-led HBO card featuring Orlando Salido and Mikey Garcia in the night’s main event, guaranteeing more eyes than had been on him in September. That night, Golovkin obliterated tough fringe contender Gabriel Rosado, smashing up the crafty Philly fighter over six rounds and change, before Rosado’s corner had to make the right decision to stop the fight as Gabe bled all over the place and just took tons of punishment while refusing to give in.
After we’ve seen Rosado give Peter Quillin a tougher than expected night in the meantime, that win says a lot more than it appeared to in January. Rosado is no chump, and was able to stay with Quillin. Golovkin eviscerated him.
A stay-busy walkover fight against Nobuhiro Ishida in March wasn’t televised by HBO (and rightly so, as it was a lousy matchup), but Golovkin returned to their airwaves in June against Matthew Macklin, a contender who had nearly won a world title in 2011 in Germany, losing a very controversial decision against Felix Sturm. Macklin figured to be the first real test for Golovkin, the first serious middleweight he’d faced to date.
If that was a test, Golovkin aced it, knocking out Macklin in three rounds on a terrifying body shot. It hadn’t even taken long for the always-ballsy Macklin to find out he was in the ring with a different animal, either. Even in the first round, Macklin was looking a bit leery of Golovkin’s nasty power.
Now, on Saturday night, Golovkin stays at about the same level of competition, but against a man who has his own designs on an early knockout. Curtis “Showtime” Stevens may not be an elite fighter, but the 28-year-old slugger from the Brownsville neighborhood in Brooklyn can thump with the best of them. Stevens (25-3, 18 KO) was last seen on HBO way back in 2007, when he lost a dreadfully dull decision to Andre Dirrell, a super middleweight thought to be on the rise at the time.
As Dirrell avoided Stevens as best he could, clearly not wanting anything to do with his power and content to win boring and kill the crowd by rather easily outboxing the cruder Stevens, it was thought then that neither man would be on HBO again any time soon. Dirrell because he was so offensively boring, and Stevens because he just wasn’t good enough.
It’s debatable whether or not Stevens has gotten a lot better since then, but it seems fairly clear that moving down to 160 has done his already-good punching power some favors. At 5’7″, Stevens is a compact, powerfully-built middleweight who may have the best left hook in the division outside of Golovkin, who may have the best version of every punch in the division. A vicious headhunter, Stevens doesn’t figure to be able to stand up to Golovkin’s power any better than anyone else has, but he has the puncher’s chance many of them did not.
If Curtis Stevens lands a clean bomb, anyone in the division is in trouble. He’s got that kind of power. Whether he’ll have a chance to show any of it on Saturday is the question.
An impressive win for Golovkin will keep him moving forward as an unlikely new cornerstone performer for HBO boxing, and really, this could only happen in a world where we have seen a Filipino ex-flyweight become the sport’s biggest global superstar. It’s a worldwide sport, and American promoters and TV networks seem to finally be realizing that if you can’t count on “the next American star” at heavyweight or any other division, there’s no reason to not go international.
Gennady Golovkin probably isn’t going to be the next Manny Pacquiao, but h’s definitely on the road to being a box office fighter. Curtis Stevens will look to change that tomorrow night.