- Gennady Golovkin returns to the ring for the first time following his first career defeat
- Steve Rolls faces a massive task against the former world champ
- A third clash with Saul Canelo is in the works for Golovkin if he wins
Superstar Gennady Golovkin will aim to bounce back from the first defeat of his career when he takes on little-known Steve Rolls in New York on Saturday at Madison Square Garden.
The former middleweight world champion is seeking a third fight against Mexican idol Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Rolls is very much a tune-up opponent.
Golovkin vs Rolls Odds
*Odds taken 06/04/19
Kazakh Golovkin is a massive -7692 favorite to win. Rolls is rated a +1100 outsider.
Setback Against Canelo
Alvarez, now a three-belt middleweight champion, inflicted the first setback of Golovkin’s career last September when he defeated him on a majority decision in Las Vegas.
It cost Golovkin the WBA and WBC world title belts and his eight-year reign as champion.
After a controversial draw in the pair’s first fight, Golovkin is eager to nail down a trilogy fight which has been penciled in for September.
Saturday’s date at the Garden will not test the 37-year-old Golovkin unless age has unexpectedly begun to catch up with him.
However, boxing is buzzing with the thrill of the upset after the shock defeat of Britain’s former WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion by Andy Ruiz Jr. at the fabled New York venue last weekend. A small interest bet on the massive outsider might be fun, at least.
Golovkin vs Rolls Tale of the Tape
|159 lbs||Weight (last fight)||160 lbs|
Rolls is on a Roll
Rolls himself is 35 and is a part-time fighter who also works as a fitness instructor and personal trainer in Toronto. He has compiled a record of 19 wins and no defeats since his professional debut in 2011 although he has never faced an opponent remotely near world level.
Ten of those opponents have been dispatched by knock-out, and Rolls insists he is ready to seize his chance to cause another major upset.
Rolls spent time working at the world-renowned Kronk Gym in Detroit under the tutelage of the late, great trainer Emmanuel Steward.
Although his fight record boasts no well-known names, he has been employed as a sparring partner by global-level performers such as Adonis Stevenson, David Lemieux, Billy Joe Saunders, Glen Johnson, Andy Lee, and Lucian Bute.
— ? (@CFCBrano) May 26, 2019
He also spent time working at the world-renowned Kronk Gym in Detroit under the tutelage of the late, great trainer Emmanuel Steward.
He boxed for the Canadian national amateur team in 2009 and 2010 while compiling an unpaid record of 83 wins and 14 defeats.
Rolls’ most recent contest last December earned him the USBA middleweight title thanks to a unanimous decision victory against KeAndrae Leatherwood at the Coca-Cola Coliseum in Toronto.
Golovkin Still Among the Best Pound-for-Pound Boxers in the World
The chances of a shock result are minute, however. Golovkin has been one of the most skilled, ruthless and devastating fighters of the past decade and remains rated at no. 6 in ESPN’s ranking of the world’s best pound-for pound boxers.
The Ring magazine rates him as the word’s seventh best pound-for–pound operator.
He also has major motivation as he prepares to avenge his defeat by Alvarez and regain his world titles later in the year. And he has teamed up with a new trainer, Johnathon Banks.
— Boxing Insider.com (@BoxingInsider) June 4, 2019
Golovkin’s record now stand at 39 wins – with 34 knockouts – and one defeat.
Golovkin is Taking Rolls Seriously
He is adamant that despite his hopes of another clash with Alavraez, he is not looking past the massive underdog Rolls.
Golovkin said: “I know he’s undefeated and it’s very important for me to understand he’s a professional athlete too… One punch can change the fight. I know he’s hungry and this is the biggest chance of his career. So I’m ready.”
Pick: Steve Rolls (+1100)