Saunders, Andrade, Derevyanchenko, Jacobs lead list of possible replacements for Canelo
Remember when it seemed that nobody in the 160lb division wanted to fight Gennady Golovkin? Well that’s doesn’t seem to be the case anymore. While we await the decision from the Nevada State Athletic Commission concerning the future of Golovkin’s rematch versus Canelo Alvarez, several fighters in the division have shown an interest in being Alvarez’s replacement.
According to Golovkin’s promoter, Tom Loeffler, the preferred choice of opponent, should the inevitable happen and Alvarez gets suspended, would be WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders. Golovkin has long stated his desire to become undisputed although he turned down the opportunity last summer to instead sign to fight Alvarez. Saunders however, has a fight scheduled for June 23rd against former Golovkin foe Martin Murray. He is also currently nursing an injury that forced the Murray bout to be postponed once already.
Former junior middleweight champion Demetrius Andrade threw his name in the hat earlier this week and now the most recent fighter to add his name to the mix is Sergiy Derevyanchenko who is the mandatory for Golovkin’s IBF title. Derevyanchenko says he is more than willing to put his unbeaten record on the line in a possible matchup with the middleweight king.
Keith Connolly, manager of Derevyanchenko, said that his client is ready, willing and able to fight Golovkin on May 5th. Derevyanchenko is really the only mandatory that’s not busy. Jermall Charlo has a fight April 21 against Hugo Centeno Jr., while Andrade is currently the mandatory for Saunders.
Connolly took the opportunity to point out that Andrade backed out of a fight with Derevyanchenko late last year and is somewhat considered a “safety first” type fighter that wouldn’t invoke interest from fans. In addition, fighting a southpaw on short notice may not be very enticing to Golovkin and his team.
Derevyanchenko, on the other hand is a guy that could provide an “all action” type fight that most would consider fan friendly. Derevyanchenko is available and could be the logical choice.
One thing is certain whoever it may be, whether it’s Saunders, Derevyanchenko, Andrade, Jacobs, Charlo or whoever, they sure do seem a lot more eager than anyone was to face the Kazakhstan native a couple of years ago.
By: Garrisson “Bo” Bland