By Mark Eisner: WBO middleweight champion Demetrius Andrade’s promoter Eddie Hearn says he wants to put pressure on DAZN to get former champion Gennady Golovkin to face Andrade next. GGG is the one that Hearn wants for unbeaten Demetrius’ next fight later this year, and he believes he’s got a good chance of making that match-up with the help of DAZN, of course.
Whether Andrade’s performance in beating Maciej Sulecki last Saturday night was good enough for him to get the mega-match against Triple G or Saul Canelo Alvarez is unknown. That’ll be up to Canelo’s promoters at Golden Boy Promotion and GGG’s management to decide.
Hearn says he wants Golovkin and Alvarez to fight Andrade, because he believes his fighter will beat both guys. However, he realizes that Alvarez (52-1-2, 35 KOs) will possibly be moving up to 175 for his next fight to challenge WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev in September.
Hearn wants GGG next for Andrade
So this is Hearn’s plan:He wants Golovkin to fight Andrade next, and then Canelo faces Kovalev in September. The winner of those two fights battle each other in a tournament-like final in 2020. It sounds good, but will Golovkin (39-1-1, 35 KOs) agree to fight the unbeaten Andrade (28-0, 17 KOs)? After the way Andrade dominated challenger Maciej Sulecki (28-2, 11 KOs) last Saturday night, GGG might choose to stay as far away as possible to the Rhode Island native. Golovkin isn’t good at cutting off the ring on his opponents, and Andrade would be moving all night long to keep from getting hit by GGG.
It could be a very boring fight if Andrade stays on the move for 12 rounds. For that reason, it might not be realistic for Hearn to hope for a fight between Golovkin and Andrade. A better option would be for Andrade to defend his World Boxing Organization middleweight title against one of the contenders, like Liam Williams, Steven Butler or Alantez Fox. Those are doable fights for Andrade. Canelo and GGG are out of his league right now.
- “I’m going to put pressure on DAZN, and say, ‘we’re the home of the middleweights.’ But we know you [DAZN] want GGG against Canelo,” said Hearn at the post-fight news conference last Saturday night. “If Canelo fights [Sergey] Kovalev, why not [Andrade] fight GGG, and the winners can fight the winners.”
Andrade nearly pitched a shutout in defeating Sulecki by a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision on DAZN in front of a loud crowd of 7,136 Boxing fans at the Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island. The scores were 120-107, 120-107 and 120-107. Those scores are about as one-sided as a 12 round fight can be. Andrade knocked Sulecki down in round one with a hard left to the head.
After the knockdown, Andrade unloaded with a barrage of shots, but he missed most of them, and failed to get Sulecki out of there. In between rounds, Andrade’s corner told him to back off, and box Sulecki. Andrade agreed, and the remainder of the fight he used his slick Boxing style to embarrass Sulecki in putting on a masterclass performance.
Sulecki didn’t put pressure on Andrade
After the first round, Sulecki fought cautiously, and let Andrade control the fight without doing much to force the issue with him. When Sulecki did come forward to attempt to land shots, Andrade would nail him with fast combiations, and then move away. As the fight progressed, Andrade would swiftly move away whenever the slow-footed Sulecki would come forward to attempt to engage with him. This had the effect of frustrating Sulecki, making him less interested in attacking, because he couldn’t get to the fleet-footed Andrade.
- “Where’s Canelo? Where’s GGG? What’s the holdup?” Andrade said. “I didn’t look past Sulecki. I just knew I was going to beat him.”
Andrade, 31, unwittingly may have undermined his own efforts of getting Canelo to fight him by being a little too clever inside the ring last Saturday night, because he may have permanently ruined his chances for a fight against the Mexican star. It’s well known that Canelo doesn’t like fighting slick boxers, which is why he never fought Billy Joe Saunders in the past. The way that Andrade fought was similar Saunders, Emanuel Augustus, Naseem Hamed and Roy Jones Jr. Andrade’s fighting style was a mix of all those fighters, but he didn’t look as good as those guys. Jones Jr. had amazing hand speed during his prime that allowed him to do things that other fighters couldn’t dream of doing. Andrade lacked the hand speed of Jones to impress in the same way he used to during his years of his career.
Hearn: No one says Canelo beats Andrade 100%
- “You can’t say Canelo beats Andrade. I don’t believe anyone in Boxing says, ‘Yeah, he beats him 100 percent.’ So when you’ve got a fighter like Canelo, do you want to put him in a fight like that when you’re unsure he’s going to win? I think they’d be more confident going into a GGG fight than they would going into a Demetrius Andrade fight,” said Hearn.
It’s difficult to say who wins in a fight between Andrade and Canelo. We do know that the 6’1″ Andrade would have a big height and reach advantage over the 5’8″ Canelo Alvarez, and that would make things interesting. One difference between what we saw from Sulecki last night and Canelo would be the ring intelligence of the Mexican star. Sulecki looked confused, and mentally defeated by the fourth round at his inability to get to Andrade consistently, and deal with his hand speed advantage. Canelo is a different story.
With Canelo’s fast hands, he would cause Andrade a lot of problems each time he gets in punching range. Canelo is a lot faster than Andrade, and he would get the better of him when they would exchange. Further, with the way Andrade appeared to gas out in the championship rounds last night, he would be vulnerable against Canelo, who tends to come on late in his fights.
Andrade is just too good says Hearn
- “He’s popular with his broadcaster [DAZN], and he’s popular with the people and his fans,” said Hearn about Andrade at the post-fight news conference last Saturday night,” said Hearn. “The problem is, he’s just too good. So who’s going to want to fight Demetrius Andrade with the risk. No one wants to fight him, because he’s too good, and they want an excuse. Now they actually don’t have an excuse. He’s got a belt, and he’s got fans. He’s got a broadcaster, and he’s got money. He’s going to be hard to avoid now. From support from the media, fans and DAZN, he’s going to put pressure on me,” said Hearn.
Hearn might be right about Andrade being “too good” for him to be considered a viable alternative for the superstars Canelo and GGG. In this case, DAZN might not be able to help Hearn force those two popular fighters to face Demetrius. DAZN can talk to them, and try and persuade them to face Andrade, but they can’t force them to fight him. The best way for Andrade to get Canelo and Golovkin to face him is to keep winning, and looking good. It would help for Andrade to score knockouts of his opponents, stay in the pocket, and move less around the ring.
Fans not impressed with Andrade’s performance against Sulecki
Judging by the many negative comments on social media last Saturday night in response to Andrade’s win over Sulecki, the Boxing fans didn’t like his safety first style of fighting. Andrade will need to change the way he fights if he wants to impress the fans, and get Canelo and Golovkin to agree to fight him. Andrade is not another Floyd Mayweather Jr. in terms of impressing fans with his fighting style, and he needs to forget about being slick and focus on sitting down on his shots. Andrade will never be another Mayweather, Roy Jones Jr. or Naseem Hamed. Right now, Andrade’s fighting style is closer to Emanuel Agustus (38-34-6, 20 KOs) than any of those fighters.
- “With GGG, the style of Demetrius Andrade; it’s a great fight. I’d have concerns for Demetrius in that fight, but that’s what he wants,” said Hearn. “He wants those kind of fights. He didn’t lose a second of a round tonight against a really good fighter [Sulecki], rated #1. He’s going to want the challenges, so we’re going to try and deliver them for him. Tonight was a major, major moment in his career. In the first round, he came out like I’d never seen him before. I was actually thinking, ‘Don’t tell him to calm down in his corner.’ The first DAZN says is he was told to calm down in his corner. That’s why he looks like that after 28 fights. He’s never really been hit,” said Hearn about Andrade.
The pressure that Golovkin would put on Andrade would a lot more than what Sulecki showed last night. GGG’s punching power would make it tougher on Andrade, and he would be forced to defend more to keep from getting knocked out. Sulecki’s shots weren’t hard enough to hurt Andrade, but it would be different situation with Golovkin. He hits harder, and it would be a tough fight for Andrade.