Spike O’Sullivan to challenge World Champion Gennady Golovkin in New York?

As the likelihood that Canelo Alvarez takes to the ring on May 5th continues to decrease, the chance that Spike O’Sullivan will challenge for the middleweight crown becomes more and more real.

With Alvarez looking set for a ban between six months and two years in length – WBC, WBA, and IBF champ Gennady Golovkin is in need of an opponent for a fight date in five week’s time.

Following their controversial draw in September which most felt Golovkin [37(33)-0-1] won, the pair were due to rematch at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. This clash looks dead in the water now, however, following two failed drug tests from Canelo last month and a subsequent temporary suspension from the Nevada Athletic Commission.

This suspension is expected to be increased to an outright ban at a formal hearing on April 18th and O’Sullivan – who was initially lined up as a September opponent for Canelo – is now one of the front-runners to take the Mexican’s place on May 5th.

Nothing is confirmed yet and O’Sullivan [27(19)-2(1)] had been known to be in the mix since earlier this week. Now though it looks that Mahon 33-year-old is one of two fancied options for Team Golovkin.

With Boo-Boo Andrade a tricky southpaw, WBO champion Billy Joe Saunders out injured, and Sergiy Derevyanchenko possessing a name value which is far inferior to his talents and threat, O’Sullivan is being looked at as the perfect replacement for Canelo along with hot Mexican light middleweight prospect Jamie Munguia.

21-year-old Munguia – the 2017 Ring Magazine Prospect of the Year – would help the May 5th event retain its Mexican flavour for the Cinco de Mayo celebrations. Ring sources state that the 28(24)-0 fighter has already been in talks with Golovkin’s team, something promoter Tom Loeffler did not deny.

While the City of Las Vegas is keen for the fight to take place on the Mexican holiday weekend, Golovkin is also considering eschewing this theme completely.

O’Sullivan, who had been preparing for a Golden Boy on ESPN headline slot in Vegas on Friday May 4th, comes into frame as an alternative which the LA Times reveal would see the bout moved to the Madison Square Garden Arena in New York.

The Celtic Warriors Gym fighter is one bout into a four-fight TV deal with Golden Boy and now looks certain for huge fights. Two paths seem to lie ahead – a shot at Golovkin’s unified middleweight crown or a headline fight in Las Vegas which would lead towards a mega-money slot as the comeback opponent for Canelo.


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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on irish-boxing.com, Boxing News, the42.ie, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: joneill6@tcd.ie