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Gennady Golovkin targets Madison Square Garden for next fight

Gennady Golovkin targets Madison Square Garden for next fight
Gennady Golovkin reacts after retaining his title against Canelo Alvarez in a middleweight title fight in September 2017. (John Locher / Associated Press)

Gennady Golovkin wants to return to New York’s Madison Square Garden for his next fight despite a substantial push by officials in Texas to bring him to San Antonio’s Alamodome.

The ideal date for Golovkin (38-1-1, 34 knockouts) to make his debut on DAZN is June 8, since ESPN is televising unbeaten heavyweight Tyson Fury’s bout in Las Vegas on June 15.

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Golovkin’s handlers are expected to huddle with the New York State Athletic Commission on Wednesday morning to discuss that date at MSG, where the former long-reigning middleweight champion has fought five times, while hoping to firm up his opponent.

If there's an issue with June 8, the next best option would be Friday, June 14.

“The Contender” winner Brandon Adams reportedly intends to fight unbeaten middleweight Jermall Charlo on June 15 on Showtime, leaving Golovkin to choose from lesser foes including Cameroon-born Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam (37-3, 21 KOs).

N’Dam N’Jikam was the World Boxing Assn. middleweight champion for five months in 2017, and previously lost a unanimous decision to former International Boxing Federation champion David Lemieux for that belt.

Meanwhile, Texas event coordinator Lester Bedford was hopeful of luring Golovkin to San Antonio for the bout, a possible precursor to a third fight between Golovkin and two-belt middleweight champion Canelo Alvarez this year at AT&T Stadium outside Dallas.

Bedford said the Alamodome was going to be configured for 38,000 seats, with the city operators of the venue offering a rent-free package.

“’Triple-G is such a big name among American Hispanics, it’s a perfect fit,” Bedford said.

“San Antonio wants this fight badly, and we don’t care who he fights. If the opponent is good enough for DAZN, he’s good enough for us. Gennady has endeared himself to the fight fans, and while he’d be returning to New York with his [least-known] opponent in quite some time while coming off a loss [to Alvarez], it’d be a huge media event in San Antonio.

“It’d be a great opportunity to make a splash in Texas, and it would help with building the Canelo fight.”

However, Golovkin handlers said talks have been focused on Madison Square Garden, and with just more than two months remaining before the date, the thinking was to stay in New York, where that crowd has long supported Golovkin.

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