Demetrius Andrade still would love to fight Gennadiy Golovkin.
Andrade doesn’t sense that the feeling is mutual, not unless promoter Eddie Hearn and DAZN offer the Kazakh knockout artist more money. The unbeaten WBO middleweight champion believes Golovkin would like to continue facing less imposing opposition while waiting to land an elusive, lucrative third fight against rival Canelo Alvarez.
“I think you have to entice him with the money,” Andrade told BoxingScene.com. “He’s already showing he doesn’t wanna do it. He wants to wait for the third fight with Canelo. That’s what he’s waiting for. So, he’s gonna fight decent guys, OK guys, maybe not the most elite guys, because that’s what he’s looking for. Is it because of the money? I don’t know.”
Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing promotes Andrade and co-promotes Golovkin, which should make their fight easier to arrange. Squaring off against Andrade also would afford Golovkin an opportunity to add Andrade’s WBO belt to his IBF and IBO middleweight crowns.
The 33-year-old Andrade (29-0, 18 KOs) is scheduled to make a mandated defense of his championship April 17 against Wales’ Liam Williams (23-2-1, 18 KOs) at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.
The Providence, Rhode Island, native hopes a 160-pound title unification fight versus Golovkin becomes more realistic later this year. If that requires offering Golovkin more money, Andrade cannot see any reason why that should be an obstacle for Hearn, whose budget is in part funded through his partnership with DAZN.
“Give him a little more to see if he wants to make the fight happen,” Andrade said. “That’s what it comes down to. The money’s there for these fights. You’re throwing all this money to Canelo and these guys. Yo, put it where it needs to be.”
If Golovkin’s intention is, as Andrade claimed, to minimize risk while waiting out a third fight versus Alvarez, the process likely will continue to test the aging champion’s patience. If Mexico’s Alvarez (55-1-2, 37 KOs) defeats England’s Billy Joe Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) on May 8 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, the four-division champion is expected to pursue a full super middleweight title unification fight against unbeaten IBF champ Caleb Plant (21-0, 12 KOs) that likely would be scheduled for September.
Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs), who will turn 39 on April 8, most recently stopped overmatched mandatory challenger Kamil Szeremeta (21-1, 5 KOs) after seven one-sided rounds December 18 at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.
“He got into the ring recently against his mandatory, so he’s gonna fight and he wants to fight,” Andrade said. “So, now it’s like, ‘OK, here’s a little extra to fight Demetrius.’ And if he says no, then what’s the reason why? You can’t sit here and say Canelo. If Canelo is the pound-for-pound man, the best fighter out there, why don’t you wanna fight Demetrius and go beat him, so you make that [third Alvarez] fight happen?”
Meanwhile, those that question whether he is worthy of facing Golovkin annoy Andrade, who has called for fights against Golovkin and Alvarez since he won the then-vacant WBO middleweight title in October 2018.
“Either way, no matter who [Golovkin] fights, it’s a payday for him,” Andrade said. “If he fights Demetrius Andrade, he’s getting paid. If he fights Canelo, he’s getting paid. If he fights [WBA champ Ryota] Murata, he’s getting paid. If he fights whoever, yes, there’s gonna be levels to it, of course. But I don’t know. At the end of the day, [a third fight against Alvarez is] what he’s looking for. And he’s showing us and he’s telling us that he don’t wanna fight no real threats unless it’s Canelo.
“The only way you can entice somebody in that situation is you’ve gotta get paid more. He needs to get offered more. There’s nothing that I can do about it. People ask me questions. Like the dumbest things I have to answer is, ‘Oh, you need a knockout. You need a statement fight.’ You know, at the end of the day, as long as I keep winning, ain’t that a statement, that I am the best, that I’m continuing to win no matter who they put in front of me?”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.