Action Images/Tony O'Brien
GENNADY GOLOVKIN has not signed a deal to fight Billy Joe Saunders later this year, according to his promoter Tom Loeffler.
It has been reported that, should he defeat Daniel Jacobs next weekend, WBC, WBA and IBF middleweight king Golovkin would face WBO champion Saunders in June.
Loeffler has reputed those claims and insists Jacobs is not being overlooked, however also pointed out that it is a part of his role to look ahead to the future.
“There is no deal in place and everyone is focused on the Danny Jacobs fight on the 18th,” he said.
“However, it is my job, because it has been so difficult to get fights for Gennady, to look forward and it has always been his goal to unify all the titles.
“If there is a possibility for Saunders in the future and he’s ready, we would want the fight, but right now we’re focused on March 18th. If everything goes right on the 18th for Gennady then we will see what the next highest profile fight will be and that is the one title (WBO) that has eluded him so far.”
Saunders has frequently called Golovkin out and earlier this year claimed he was on the verge of sealing a “massive” fight, which most felt was against Golovkin.
Loeffler is rightfully hesistant whenever a fighter mentions his charge. Last year, Chris Eubank Jnr walked away from a blockbuster clash with Golovkin at the last minute, paving the way for Kell Brook to get the fight.
“We will see who is willing to get in the ring with him. A lot of people talk about fighting Gennady but very few people actually sign the contract,” Loeffler said.
“We know everything that happened last year with Canelo and Billy Joe Saunders with Chris Eubank and finally, Kell Brook was the one to step up and take the fight.
“We have a lot of respect for Kell Brook and we have a lot of respect for Danny Jacobs – he actually signed the contract to get in the ring and he was a mandatory challenger; Gennady also fulfills all of his mandatory obligations.
“This is the highest profile fight and the most dangerous fight Gennady has had. There is no way anyone could look past this fight but I am certainly in discussions with many different promoters to see who would actually be available and willing to fight him if he is victorious in March.”
The other monster fight that could be in Golovkin’s future is a mouth-watering showdown with Canelo Alvarez, who fights Julio Cesar Chavez Jnr in Las Vegas on May 6.
Loeffler is still in touch with Canelo’s promoter, Golden Boy, and there is still a verbal agreement in place for a September meeting.
“We are having discussions but there are two big ifs there. Gennady has got to win March 18 and Canelo has got to win May 6 and if those two things don’t happen there is no fight,” he said.
“If Golden Boy is ready and if Canelo is ready to make the deal then we would be open to it but it is my job to look forward. If Gennady is not successful next week then it doesn’t matter what plans I make or Abel or the Hermann brothers make – that all goes out the window.
“We have a lot of respect for Jacobs and he is the biggest challenge for Gennady. He has great hand speed and he is physically bigger than Gennady and will present a tremendous match-up.”
With 16,000 attending the Keith Thurman-Danny Garcia welterweight unification fight this past weekend in Brooklyn and attendances growing around the world, boxing finds itself in a healthy state.
Loeffler puts this down to a simple factor – the best fighting the best.
I think when you have the right match-ups in boxing the fans respond. We are expecting – we sold out the last time with [David] Lemieux but we are expecting a larger crowd this time because we added floor seats so there will be more people there than any other ‘GGG’ fight we have had at the Garden,” he said.
“It was a great night of boxing at Barclays – you’ve got the Wembley Stadium fight coming up at the end of April with Klitschko vs. Joshua with 90,000 tickets sold. When you have big fight match-ups the fans will respond and they are definitely responding right now to Gennady fighting Daniel Jacobs. The best two middleweights in the world fighting each other, both in their primes, both having over a 90% knockout ratio. You add Chocolatito and all of the other great boxers on the show, it is going to be a tremendous night and we expect a sold out Madison Square Garden next week.”