Gennady Golovkin will return to the ring following his first loss when he meets Canada’s Steve Rolls on June 8 at New York’s Madison Square Garden. The bout is to be be streamed on DAZN.
The bout was announced Tuesday following an extended break for former middleweight champion Golovkin (38-1-1, 34 knockouts) in the wake of his majority-decision loss to current two-belt champion Canelo Alvarez in September.
“I am very excited to be returning to the ring and bringing the Big Drama Show back to Madison Square Garden. The Garden's fans are fantastic,” Golovkin said. “I love boxing and I promise to bring the best of me to everyone who will be watching me in an all-action fight with Steve Rolls. I am very happy that GGG Promotions has a new home at DAZN.”
The fight against the 35-year-old Rolls (19-0, 10 KOs) is seen as an opportunity for Golovkin to remain busy while he awaits a possible trilogy fight against Mexico’s Alvarez, who is scheduled to meet International Boxing Federation champion Daniel Jacobs on May 4 in a unification bout at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Rolls won the minor U.S. Boxing Assn. middleweight title in December with a unanimous decision over KeAndrae Leatherwood. Four of Rolls’ last eight bouts have gone to the judges.
“I want to sincerely thank DAZN and GGG himself for giving me the opportunity to challenge one of the best fighters in the world,” said Rolls. “But let me be clear: I've won national championships and represented my country, and Golovkin is just a man. I'm coming to win this fight and put my name among the best middleweights in the world.”
Golovkin, who trains in Big Bear, had stopped 23 consecutive opponents before going the distance with Jacobs in 2017. Later that year, he and Alvarez fought to a draw.