Gennady Golovkin giving credit to crafty lefty Willie Monroe Jr.

Undefeated middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin looks to continue his streak of 19 consecutive knockouts when he fights Willie Monroe Jr. on May 16 at The Forum in Inglewood. (Jonathan Moore/Getty Images)

If you are going to be in the greater Los Angeles area May 16, you’d be smart to attend the fight between middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin and challenger Willie Monroe Jr. at the Fabulous Forum in Inglewood (on HBO).

You’ve never heard of Monroe? Two things: Golovkin is fighting, so who cares? And don’t laugh off Monroe. He’s a southpaw, and he’s smart, something every orthodox fighter hates.

The point is, any time you have a chance to see someone like Golovkin in person, do it. This guy just might be a legend in the making. He’s 32-0 with 29 knockouts and has knocked out his past 19 opponents. No, he hasn’t knocked out the other top-top guys in the division because they won’t fight him.

Take fellow middleweight champion Miguel Cotto, for instance. Is there anyone out there who really believes he wants to fight Golovkin? Didn’t think so.

Besides, Cotto’s trainer, Freddie Roach, will never let Cotto tangle with Golovkin. Not if he has anything to say about it. Roach is not seven-time Trainer of the Year for nothing. He knows Cotto would get destroyed.

Golovkin and Monroe played host to a news conference this week at the Forum to promote their fight. The two spoke with a small group of reporters before the proceedings began.

Not surprisingly, there was an emphasis on brains, because there is no way Monroe can win with brawn. He is 19-1 with just six knockouts.

Since Golovkin is a monster, Monroe’s only chance is obvious.

“It’s just intelligence,” said Monroe, of Rochester, N.Y. “You have to be an intelligent individual inside and outside the ring. It takes a lot of heart and determination to not only be intelligent — because anybody can have the mindset — but to actually apply it and execute on key. I think that’s gift. That’s a gift I’ve been blessed with.”

Golovkin is coming off an 11th-round TKO of Martin Murray on Feb. 21 in Monte Carlo. He was happy for the work because, as he noted, most of his fights are short. This one could be longer because of Monroe’s style.

“This is very good for me, maybe it’s good for my fans because maybe it won’t be two rounds,” said Golovkin, who is trained by West Covina’s Abel Sanchez in Big Bear. “He’s not like an open fighter. He has like Cuban style. He’s good a boxer, like (Guillermo) Rigondeaux. And (Erislandy) Lara. Mabye difficult for ‘Canelo,’ maybe difficult for me.”

Source: LA Daily News