Gennadiy Golovkin Escapes New York with Unanimous Decision over Sergiy Derevyanchenko
By Hector Franco | Senior Writer and Editor
Published: October 06, 2019
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - At the “World’s Most Famous” arena, Madison Square Garden in the heart of New York City, the Middleweight division took center stage as Gennadiy “GGG” Golovkin (40-1-1, 35 KOs) faced off against Sergiy Derevyanchenko (13-2, 10 KOs) for the vacant IBF Middleweight title.
While Golovkin is one of the more well-known pugilists currently in the boxing world with his accomplishments ranging from 19 straight title defenses of his Middleweight title and scoring an unprecedented 23 consecutive knockout victories, his opponent Derevyanchenko is best known for his defeat at the hands of Daniel Jacobs last October 2018.
The Ukrainian fighter who now fights out of Brooklyn, New York amassed an impressive amateur record of 390-20.
Dereveyanchenko also participated in the World Series of Boxing, which allows amateur fighters to fight in professional boxing bouts without it affecting their amateur record. He went 23-1 in his matches in the World Series of Boxing.
Before the bout Golovkin was as high as -450 betting favorite (bet $450 to win $100) over Derevyanchenko, who was a +350 underdog (bet $100 to win $350).
As they say, fights are won in the ring, not on paper.
In the first round, Golovkin was able to score a knockdown off of a right hand that put Derevyanchenko on the canvas. It was a flash knockdown, and it did not appear that the Ukrainian was severely hurt.
The second round saw Golovkin open up a cut over Derevyanchenko’s right eye.
The DAZN commentary team provided a replay that showed a punch caused the cut. However, the referee Harvey Dock ruled the cut was caused by a headbutt.
The cut may have altered Derevyanchenko’s game plan somewhat, but it did not stop him from taking the fight to Golovkin.
Over the next few rounds, Derevyanchenko was able to outwork Golovkin landing punches in combination to the head and body. Anytime Derevyachenko was first to let his hands go; he would find success.
In the second half of the fifth round, Derevyanchenko landed a left hook to the body that visibly hurt Golovkin.
The former Middleweight kingpin recovered almost immediately and began to regain some control in the sixth and seventh rounds with his jab along with some well-timed uppercuts and shots to the body.
Each round that passed after the seventh could have gone to either fighter as both men had various moments of success.
Anytime Golovkin had moments where he was backing up Derevyanchenko with his jab; the Ukrainian would fire back a return attack of his own. Many of the rounds could have been scored on preference.
The championship rounds were action-packed, filled with changes in momentum. When the final bell rang, signifying the end of the fight, it was unclear as to who would be declared the victor.
After twelve rounds, the judges awarded Golovkin with a close unanimous decision with scores of 114-113 and 115-112 twice. Golovkin is now the IBF Middleweight champion.
The punch statistics show just how closely contested the bout was fought. Golovkin landed 243 out of 720 total punches at a 34 percent connect rate. Derevyanchenko landed 230 out of 730 total punches at a 31 percent connect rate.
One of the most significant discrepancies between the two men was in the number of jabs landed as Golovkin landed 107 to 47 total jabs.
However, Derevyanchenko landed 183 out of 472 power punches at a 39 percent connect rate to Golovkin’s 136 out of 314 power punches at a 43 percent connect rate.
Derevyanchenko’s 230 total punches and 183 power punches are the most landed on Golovkin from any fight tracked by CompuBox.
Golovkin-Derevyanchenko will down as one of the best fights of 2019.
The usually pro-Golovkin New York crowd booed the Kazakhstani fighter after the decision was read. An immediate rematch with Derevyanchenko could be next for Golovkin.
At 37 years of age, Golovkin has shown that he is no longer the same fighter he was back in 2015 at his absolute peak.
However, credit has to be given to Derevyanchenko, who was not afraid to trade, back up, and outwork arguably the biggest puncher in the Middleweight division.
Golovkin will have options for a third fight with rival Canelo Alvarez or a unification bout with WBO Middleweight titleholder Demetrius Andrade.
Derevyanchenko should now permanently be in the mix with any of the other champions in the division.
(Featured Photo: Jose Miranda/Frontproof Media)