Childhood & Early Life
Gennady Golovkin was born on April 8, 1982, in Karagandy in the Kazakh SSR, Soviet Union, (at present Karagandy, Kazakhstan). His father, a Russian, was a coal miner and his mother, a Korean, worked as a lab assistant.
He shared great bond with his older brothers, Vadim and Sergey, and his twin brother, Maxim. He was inspired by his older brothers to foray into boxing when he was eight years old.
Since his kindergarten days, his brothers would arrange fights for him and his opponents, much older than him. According to him, it would be "Every day, different guys".
Vadim and Sergey were enlisted in the Soviet Army when Golovkin was nine years of age. The government intimated his family about Vadim’s demise in 1990 and about Sergey’s demise in 1994.
Victor Dmitriev became his first boxing coach when he joined a boxing gym for the first time in Maikuduk, Karaganda.
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From November 2002, he held a scholarship with the Olympic Solidarity program.
He bagged gold medal at 2003 ‘World Amateur Boxing Championships’ held at Bangkok, defeating Oleg Mahskin.
He went on to win gold medal beating Christopher Camat at the 2004 ‘Asian Amateur Boxing Championships’ in Puerto Princesa, Philippines, thus qualifying for the 2004 Summer Olympics held at Athens, Greece. There, he represented Kazakhstan and won a silver medal.
Demonstrating excellent performance in his amateur career that he ended in 2005 with a record of 345-5, he moved on to embark on a professional career with Universum Box-Promotion making his debut in May 2006.
On July 11, 2009, he won the vacant WBO Inter-Continental middleweight title beating Brazil’s John Anderson Carvalho in Nürburgring, Nürburg, Germany.
Due to some disputes with Universum, Golovkin ended his contract in January 2010.
He signed deal with K2 and came under tutelage of veteran trainer Abel Sanchez and started training in Big Bear, California, US.
He was successful in winning his first major world championship on August 14, 2010, beating Columbian Milton Núñez to bag the WBA interim middleweight title in Roberto Durán Arena, Panama City, Panama.
In October 2010, he was named the sole WBA champion at middleweight after WBA stripped Australian pro boxer Daniel Geale of the title when the latter went for a rematch with Anthony Mundine.
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On December 9, 2011, he battered US pro boxer Lajuan Simon in a match held in Ballsaal Interconti-Hotel, Düsseldorf, Germany to retain WBA (Regular) middleweight title as also win the vacant IBO middleweight title.
His debut match in the US saw him beating Polish professional boxer Grzegorz Proksa on September 1, 2012 in New York City.
Japan’s pro boxer Nobuhiro Ishida, a former WBA interim super welterweight champion, faced his career’s first knockout from Golovkin when the latter finished the March 30, 2013 match held at Salle des Étoiles in Monte Carlo, Monaco, with a forceful overhand right in the third round.
He successfully defended both his WBA and IBO middleweight titles in a nail-biting match held on June 29, 2013 in Connecticut against British-Irish pro boxer Matthew Macklin.
His breathtaking fight with American pro boxer Curtis Stevens held on November 2, 2013 at ‘The Theater at Madison Square Garden’, New York City, not only saw him retaining WBA and IBO middleweight titles but also marked his 15th straight stoppage victory. The fight was finished by Golovkin with a technical knockout on Stevens in the 8th round. It garnered huge worldwide attention and was broadcast in over 100 nations.
He succeeded in retaining WBA and IBO middleweight titles against Ghanaian professional boxer Osumanu Adama on February 1, 2014 and thereafter on June 3, 2014, he was officially elevated by WBA to his present status of WBA (Super) champion.
A special permission was granted to Golovkin for defending his title against Daniel Geale. Marking 11th title defence, Golovkin succeeded in retaining his WBA (Super) and IBO middleweight titles against Geale through a third round stoppage in a fight held on July 26, 2014 at the ‘Madison Square Garden’.
On October 18, 2014, he fought with the then Interim WBC champion, Mexican pro boxer, Marco Antonio Rubio, at the StubHub Center in Carson, California, marking his first West Coast fight. He not only retained WBA (Super) and IBO middleweight titles but also won the WBC interim middleweight title.
In his fight with British pro boxer, Martin Murray, on February 21, 2015 at Salle des Etoiles, Monte Carlo, he was successful in defending his title for the 13th time in a row.
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This feat put him as the third all-time behind Bernard Hopkins (19 wins) and Carlos Monzón (14 wins) in successive middleweight title defenses.
Moving on, he retained WBA (Super) and IBO middleweight titles against American pro boxer Willie Monroe Jr. on May 16, 2015 and then went on not only to retain the two as also the WBC interim middleweight title but also win the IBF middleweight title against Canadian pro boxer David Lemieux on October 17 that year.
His fight with Lemieux marked his 21st knockout victory in a row and with this he surpassed Monzón’s record with his 15 successive middleweight title defenses.
He faced IBF mandatory challenger, American pro boxer, Dominic Wade, on April 23, 2016 at The Forum, Inglewood, California, US. He defeated Wade, who was unbeaten till that time, and was successful in retaining his WBA (Super), IBF, IBO, and WBC interim middleweight titles.
He added another feather to his cap by defending successfully his WBC, IBF, and IBO middleweight titles in a sensational fight against British unbeaten IBF Welterweight Champion Kell Brook on September 10, 2016 at ‘The O2 Arena’, London, UK.
On March 18, 2017, millions of viewers of HBO PPV along with sold out crowd of 19,939 at the Madison Square Garden witnessed a spectacular one-on-one fight billed as ‘Middleweight Madness’, where for first time in his pro career Golovkin fought all twelve rounds against American pro boxer Daniel Jacobs.
He continued his winning spree at ‘Middleweight Madness’ as well thus retaining WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, and IBO middleweight titles.
His upcoming fight with Mexican pro boxer Canelo Álvarez will see him defending WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, and IBO middleweight titles on September 16, 2017.