Gennady Golovkin feels that Ruslan Provodnikov is ‘no problem’ for Manny Pacquiao

Gennady Golovkin training inside of the Summit Gym in Big Bear, Calif. (Photo: Chris Robinson –


By Chris Robinson

Having been swinging through the Summit Gym in Big Bear, Calif. for the past year and a half on a consistent basis, I’ve become quite familiar with the characteristics of trainer Abel Sanchez’s star fighter Gennady Golovkin.

The sport’s reigning WBA middleweight champion, Golovkin’s fiery style in the ring is coupled with a low-key and unassuming personality that beguiles his penchant for brutality when fighting.

I never expect Golovkin to get too bold during our conversations but was taken aback just slightly during our last dialogue, as we discussed such boxing topics as the rumored Floyd Mayweather vs. Amir Khan fight, his Feb. 1 title defense against Osumanu Adama in Monte Carlo, Marcos Maidana’s thrilling victory over Adrien Broner, and the return of Manny Pacquiao.

Turning his attention to Pacquiao’s Nov. 23 showcase against Brandon Rios, a fight in which the Filipino star showed excellent skills and fortitude in capturing a unanimous decision, Golovkin understands just how important this victory was in the wake of Manny’s shocking knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez nearly one year prior.

“This is the first step for him,” Golovkin stated. “The first step for everybody, the fans, the TV. He’s come back. It’s great.”

As the dust settles, the boxing world looks ahead to Pacquiao’s forthcoming pay per view match in April against an opponent to be determined.

There is a strong possibility that Pacquiao could end up facing his former sparring mate and current WBO junior welterweight titlist Ruslan Provodnikov, who has seen his status in the sport skyrocket this past year with thrilling wars against Tim Bradley and Mike Alvarado.

The respect from Golovkin is easily spotted, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he thinks Provodnikov is going to be competitive if such a fight materializes.

“You know, I know Ruslan,” Golovkin explained. “I respect him. I think he’s nothing for Manny. He doesn’t have a chance.

“This is boxing,” Golovkin added. “I think he’s no problem for Manny.”

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