By Mark Elezaj
New York – Saturday night, both Gennadiy Golovkin and Sergiy Derevyanchenko battled it out, leaving everything in the ring, in what was truly one of the toughest fights of Golovkins’s career.
Golovkin regained the IBF and IBO middleweight titles via unanimous decision, in a 12 round war at Madison Square Garden, but he certainly did not look like the GGG of old.
Judges Frank Lombardi and Eric Molinski both scored the fight 115-112 for Golovkin, and Judge Kevin Morgan had it six rounds apiece, but gave Golovkin the 114-113 scorecard due to the first round knockdown.
The Fighting Voice scored it 114-113 for Golovkin.
From the start, the fight was a back and forth slug fest with both warriors having their moments. Golovkin scored a knock down with 45 seconds left in round 1, landing a clean combination m, followed by a shot to the top of the head.
Round 2, Derevyanchenko took the fight to Golovkin, outworking and out-landing him. Golovkin finally responded with a left hook that opened a deep cut around Derevyanchenko’s right eye.
Dereveyanchenko came out with a sense of urgency in the third round, attacking Golovkin’s body, but Golovkin took those shots and became the aggressor. Golovkin continued to attack Derevyanchenko, snapping his head back with an overhand right, but Derevyanchenko was able to respond with shots of his own, keeping Golovkin from following up.
Derevyanchenko continued to attack throughout the fourth round, landing numerous body and head shots, but Golovkin withstood Derevyanchenko’s aggressions. Dereyanchenko continued to take punishment while wiping away blood from around his eye. Golovkin, maintained an attack, pushing forward and targeting the eye while throwing hard shots in bunches, landing three lefts of his own as the bell sounded.
”The cut really changed the fight. I couldn’t see at times,” Derevyanchenko said. ”And he was targeting the eye. But no excuses, it is what it is, I was trying my best.”
In the fifth, referee Harvey Dock called timeout for the ringside doctor to take a close look at Derevyanchenko’s cut. Once the action resumed, both men continued to trade big shots, and the swelling beneath Golovkin’s left eye became visible. During an exchange, GGG was hurt by a hard body shot, causing him to retreat around the ring. Dereveyanchenko went after Golovkin, but the referee halted the action when he warned Derevyanchenko for hitting low.
Both fighters spent much of the sixth and seventh round trading punches back and forth.
Derevyanchenko landed a left hook to the body and an overhand right to the head in the first minute of the seventh round, but Golovkin would respond. Derevyanchenko then connected with a left uppercut later in the round, pushing Golovkin back when there was less than a minute to go in the round.
At the start of the eighth round, the ringside doctor examined Derevyanchenko’s cut one again, saying that he was good to go. Derevyanchenko continued landing combinations on Golovkin.
Golovkin landed a huge right uppercut on Derevyanchenko, snapping his head back back. Derevyanchenko took the shot and attacking the body and head, forcing Golovkin to back up.
In the tenth, Dereyanchenko landed two left hooks that appeared to stun Golovkin. Golovkin then responded, landing rights and lefts of his own, pushing Dereveyanchenko back.
Derevyanchenko fired back in what was an action-packed round, but Golovkin picked up the pace and attacked, hurting Derevyanchenko late in the round.
Derevyanchenko came out in the eleventh round, landing left hooks to the body and rights to the head. Golovkin, physically tired, would grab on to stop the action.
Derevyanchenko was on the attack in the final round, but Golovkin would respond, landing a huge left hook that knocked Derevyanchenko back.
Golovkin and Derevyanchenko continued to trade until the final bell in what was truly a fan friendly boxing match between two warriors who left it all in the ring.
After the fight, Golovkin spoke on the bout,
”Right now it’s bad day for me. It’s a huge day for Sergiy, his team,” Golovkin said.
”This is huge experience for me. Right now I know what I need exactly.”
“I lost a little bit of focus,
“After the first round, I think this is an easy fight for me. You know, and Sergiy was ready. Respect, you know.”
“I want to say thank you so much to my opponent. This was a great job. I respect his team.
“I told you, he’s a very tough guy. This is huge experience for me. Right now, I understand I need more. The focus is boxing.”
Golovkin said he would be willing to give Derevyanchenko a rematch.
“Absolutely. Big fight for DAZN, for the people, of course I’m ready,” Golovkin said. “I’m a boxer. I’m ready for anything.”
Golovkin also said that he would like a third showdown with Alvarez in the future.
“Absolutely, I’m just open to anybody,” Golovkin said of a third fight with Alvarez.
“There are so many great champions here. Sergiy, a lot of guys. Everything is ready. Just call Canelo. If he says yes, let’s do it.”
Following the fight, coming off of his second close split decision loss, Derevyanchenko stated,
“When I started moving, I felt like I was giving him room and I was getting hit with those shots that he threw and that’s why I started taking the fight to him and getting closer and not giving him room to maneuver.
“He hit me in the back of the head. He hit me behind the ear. I didn’t really see the punch, but it didn’t really affect me that much. I got up and I wasn’t really hurt so I continued to fight, so it was nothing, nothing too bad.
“I would like the rematch if it’s possible. I’m ready.
“I feel great. Thank you so much to all my fans, everybody who came to MSG.
“Thank you to my team. I want to thank everybody. It was a great night of boxing.”
~ The Fighting Voice ~