Gennady Golovkin and David Lemieux ready to put on a show in Madison Square Garden

August 21, 2015

Photo Credit: Hogan Photos/K2 Promotions & Golden Boy Promotions

Los Angeles -- At a packed downtown press conference before what is expected to be a full house crowd at Madison Square Garden on fight night, middleweight champions Gennady "GGG" Golovkin (33-0, 30 KOs) and David Lemieux (34-2, 31 KOs) were gracious and quietly confident in their promotion of a fight that essentially needs very little promotion.

Perhaps that is why they brought charismatic Golden Boy partner and future Hall of Fame boxer Bernard Hopkins along.

Hopkins added his perspective as a former middleweight champ Thursday afternoon to what is expected to be a thrilling title bout between two power punchers -- WBA, IBO and WBC Interim Middleweight World Champion Golovkin versus IBF Middleweight World Champion Lemieux.

Not that the public needed much convincing, as the promoters stated that the fight has already sold a whopping "15,000 tickets" despite having no local New York City fighter headlining the card.  Many of the ticket buyers are presumably Lemieux fans coming down from Montreal, Canada, while others are simply intelligent boxing fans who know a quality talent like "Triple G" when they see it.

"Thank you to GGG and David Lemieux for doing what is rarely done in boxing, unfortunately -- a unification, one guy, one champion," said Hopkins, a man who took on all comers and defended his middleweight belt a record 20 times.

The fight on Saturday, October 17, will be televised on HBO pay-per-view at the bargain price of $49.95, perhaps the network's way of testing whether emerging superstar Golovkin can carry a pay-per-view card.

Hopkins compared this bout to another all-action fight trilogy of the recent past.

"[Golovkin and Lemieux] can't help themselves but fight the way they've been fighting," said Hopkins. "The last match I've seen like that . . . is Arturo Gatti and Mickey Ward . . . I'm 99.9% telling you it's not going the distance."

Lemieux seemed to echo those thoughts.

"We are two pit bulls unleashed and we are going for the neck," said Lemieux.

The promoters, K2 and Golden Boy, have wisely put together an excellent undercard as well, featuring two elite flyweights in pound-for-pound top ten fighter Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez against the "Hawaiian Punch," veteran Brian Viloria.

Viloria, a very good fighter who has toiled in the often overlooked lower weight classes for many years, added his thoughtful perspective on what fighting on this high-profile card will mean for his career.

"This is the biggest stage of my career. It's far from fighting at Alameda swap meets and clubs nobody wants to go to," said Viloria.  "October 17 is going to be a great night. To be in the ring with Roman Gonzalez, and the same stage as Gennady Golovkin and David Lemieux is an honor . . . This is what I have been training all my life for."

The successful Los Angeles press tour stop capped a week of exciting media events for the fighters. On Tuesday, in New York City, Golovkin and Lemieux went to the top of the famous Empire State Building to pose with their belts before ending the day at Madison Square Garden for a press conference.

On Wednesday, the two fighters traveled to David's hometown of Montreal, Quebec, for the second press conference on the tour.

Both fighters have said all the right things and have shown respect to their opponents, although Lemieux threw out perhaps the first salvo -- a mild one at best -- expressing his confidence in his ability to win the bout.

"Yes, I do believe that I can win on Oct. 17 against Gennady Golovkin," said Lemieux.  "I don't just believe it, I understand what I need to do to win.  I'm not a dreamer, I'm a realist . . . I'm winning this fight because I know I'm gonna win.  Why? Because things I've learned over the years. Things I've tasted inside and outside of boxing . . . I'm here today because of my great determination."

Golovkin, who seems to knockout everyone he fights lately, decided to keep things simple and humble, stating, "This fight has it all. Pay-Per-View, a title unification, and a great opponent . . . I promise an amazing show."

In one final piece of good news for fight fans, the WBC's "Pepe" Sulaiman, who also was present at the press conference, announced that his organization will help set the table for another outstanding middleweight bout after this October 17 clash, as the winner of Golovkin-Lemieux will be ordered by the WBC to fight the winner of the highly-anticipated Miguel Cotto-Canelo Alvarez bout.

By Mike Elliott
Editor for

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