By John J. Raspanti
WBA and IBF middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin will be gunning for knockout victory number 22 in a row when he faces little-known Dominic Wade April 23rd) at the Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles, CA.
Wade, the IBF’s mandatory challenger, gained his dubious shot against Golovkin by beating veteran Sam Solliman last June.
Golovkin admitted a few months ago that he’d never heard of the 25-year-old Wade, who was born in Largo, Maryland.
He’s not the only one.
Wade has been saying for weeks he’s thrilled to be fighting Golovkin.
“I’m ready for this," Wade said at the press conference announcing the fight. "People ask if I’m nervous. Not at all. I has been a fighter all my life, always wanted to be a world champion. When this opportunity came up I was so excited I could have run 30 miles.”
Baby-faced assassin Golovkin (34-0, 31 KOs) was last seen in the ring beating the stuffing out of David Lemieux at a sold-out Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Always the dedicated professional, Golovkin refuses to take Wade for granted.
“This is a big opportunity for Dominic Wade,” said Golovkin at the same press conference. “I remember what it was like before I became a champion. I’m sure he’s very hungry for this opportunity and will train hard.”
That he will. Wade is undefeated in 18 fights, with 12 big wins by knockout. He’s never faced anyone remotely close to Golovkin, who makes knocking out other fighters look as easy as taking a stroll in the park.
"I know how good Gennady (Golovkin) is," said Wade. “But, I’ll be ready on April twenty-third to be victorious and show the world who the best middleweight is.”
Golovkin, who recently turned 34, is anxious to fight Canelo Alvarez in the fall. WBO middleweight champion Billy Joe Saunders recently challenged Golovkin to a fight, but his timing was suspect.
“It’s a joke for Billy Jo Saunders to want to face me right after we announced this fight. He’s not serious,” said a smiling Golovkin.
Wade refuses to consider Golovkin as an unbeatable force.
“I see flaws in his game that I can take advantage of. He’s very strong but also very basic in some ways," said Wade.
Golovkin has been criticized for not having a big name opponent on his resume. This Saturday’s bout against Wade won’t silence the chatter. He’s hopeful that a deal with lineal WBC middleweight champion Alvarez can be worked out.
"I want to fight Canelo and many big fights, big shows, but it’s not frustrating for me to face other fighters.”
Wade has a lot to prove. Can his talent match his confidence?
The answer is no. He’ll hang with Golovkin for a few rounds, but like a calculating steamroller, Golovkin will break him down and stop him before Round seven.