Jerry Glick reporting: WBA/IBO Middleweight Champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin will be making the eighth title defense of his championship against Matthew “Mack the Knife” Macklin on June 29th at MGM Grand at Foxwoods Resort, Mashantucket, Connecticut. The fight is promoted by DiBella Entertainment and K2 , it will be broadcast on HBO Boxing After Dark.
The final press conference took place at famous Gallagher’s Steakhouse in Midtown Manhattan where the media gathered to ask some last minute questions of both men.
Although not a champion, Macklin is not a novice at fighting for the title. He lost a questionable to decision to then WBA Super World Middleweight Champion Felix Sturm, then he was very competitive while losing to World Middleweight Champion Sergio Martinez. So this will be his third try at a title and he is ready mentally and physically to make this one count.
The British born Macklin knows that he’s in with a genuine banger in Golovkin who owns one of the highest knockout percentages in all of boxing. This baby faced destroyer has an undefeated record consisting of 26 wins, 23 of them by knockout. He can punch with the best of them, so how does his challenger view the situation? “Don’t get hit,” he replied. “He’s obviously a good puncher, he’s heavy handed, he’s got good skills as well. He’s accurate with his shots, but I’m not overly concerned, I’m focused on what I have to do, and the tactics that I’m going to impose on him.”
At the end of the day, he admitted that the best way to deal with his power is to not get hit. That’s similar to what his trainer, former world champion Buddy McGirt, said; “Hands up, chin down, ass off the ground,” explained Buddy. “You can’t sit in front of a guy like that. Guys that can punch, they bait you to stand still then they drop the bomb on you, so you got to give them a moving target.”
This will be Macklin’s third try at a belt in two years, not too many fighters are so fortunate to be given so many chances in so short a period of time. Macklin is not surprised; “Not really surprised because with the Sturm fight, everyone thought I won that fight. It was a great fight to watch. The Sergio fight I lost but Madison Square Garden was sold out, and even though it was a boxing match, it was an exciting boxing match.”
He added that it was more than putting on performances that almost brought him the title, it was his fan friendly style that made him the attractive opponent that he is for any champion.
“As I showed in the Sergio fight that I can adapt, I can be smart when I have to.” “When it gets grueling, he’s never been in there with someone like me.”
It’s hard to imagine anyone more hungry, or more frustrated than this brave Brit. If he keeps up the pressure and stays with the battle plan he can win the title this time, but Golovkin is no walk in the park.