Gennady Golovkin has dismissed the threat of his superfight with Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez being overshadowed by Floyd Mayweather’s bout against Conor McGregor.
Mayweather-McGregor was last week confirmed for Las Vegas on August 26, in the same city and just three weeks before the WBC, WBA and IBF middleweight unification fight between Golovkin and Alvarez.
The match-up made between Alvarez and Golovkin for September 16 at the T-Mobile Arena has long been one of the sport’s most enticing, while critics have questioned the integrity of a contest between mixed-martial-arts star McGregor – who has never boxed professionally – being pitched against one of the sport’s all-time greats in Mayweather.
There is a risk that what is expected to be both a one-sided and expensive affair will undermine boxing’s appeal so close to another equally likely to be so exciting, but Kazakhstan’s Golovkin said: “People understand a true fight, a boxing fight – mine and Canelo’s – or a big show.
“Maybe a funny show, or circus show: everybody knows. Conor, he’s not a boxer, just a show. If you want a show please watch (that). If you want to watch a true fight, a boxing fight, watch my fight.
“This is business. Conor with Floyd is not a boxing fight: everybody’s saying Conor’s not a boxer. Money fight? Okay. Show fight? Okay.”
Speculation persists that the August 26 fight between Miguel Cotto and Yoshihiro Kamegai in California could be rescheduled to avoid a clash with Mayweather-McGregor.
Oscar de la Hoya, both Cotto’s promoter and the co-promoter of Alvarez-Golovkin, said: “September 16 has always been the best date for a boxing event.
“We’d have to go back to the Julio Cesar Chavez days when September 16 has been important to the fight community. On September 16 we will see the real fight.
“We will have a sold-out arena, we will do tremendous business on pay-per-view, and most importantly we will get a tremendous fight, which is very important for me personally, because I love this sport dearly.”
Mexico’s Alvarez, at 26 nine years younger than Golovkin, refused to comment on the fight between Mayweather and McGregor, before revealing he did not recognise WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders.
The 27-year-old Saunders is scheduled to defend his title earlier on September 16 at London’s Copper Box Arena; Canadian mandatory challenger David Lemieux could this week be confirmed as his challenger if passed fit.
He interrupted the London leg of the Alvarez-Golovkin press tour to declare his interest in fighting the winner of September’s bout but Alvarez said: “To tell you the truth, I didn’t even recognise him.
“He’s got to come down in weight first before fighting one of us. I never really studied him: when we were talking earlier and discussing possibly fighting him, I saw maybe one or two rounds but I’ve never really studied him or seen him.
“I can promise you this: with one hand tied behind my back and my eyes closed, I’ll be able to beat him.”