The deadline for Gennady Golovkin and Daniel Jacobs’ representatives to negotiate their middleweight title bout before a purse bid will be assigned has been extended until Wednesday, World Boxing Assn. President Gilberto Mendoza told the Los Angeles Times on Friday.
Golovkin (36-0, 33 knockouts) is in the better negotiating position now because a WBA rule declares in its two-belt system that the “super” champion – Golovkin – will receive a 75-25 purse-split advantage over the “world” champion, Jacobs.
Jacobs’ attorney, Leon Margules, petitioned the WBA to alter the split in the case of co-champions to 60-40, and Mendoza said a WBA committee has voted on the matter, declining to reveal the outcome.
In the interim, he extended the negotiating deadline from Friday to Wednesday for Golovkin promoter Tom Loeffler and Jacobs’ manager, Al Haymon.
“If they can reach an agreement by Oct. 12, we just ask for contracts,” Mendoza said. “If they can’t, I’ll call for a purse bid within 10 days [Oct. 22] and we’ll then release what we decided. They don’t know right now.”
That unknown could motivate Loeffler to strike a fairer deal than 75-25, and would likely place the bout at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 10, with HBO televising the fight because the premium network has an exclusive deal with Golovkin.
However, if the fight goes to purse bid and the WBA has opted to amend the co-champion split to 60-40, Showtime and the Barclays Center in Brooklyn could move to make a rich offer for the bout.
“We are definitely interested and will aggressively pursue,” Golovkin-Jacobs, Showtime Executive Vice President Stephen Espinoza told The Times in a text message Friday.
Jacobs (32-1, 29 KOs) is from Brooklyn and originally won his WBA “world” middleweight belt at Barclays Center in 2014, successfully defending the belt there twice, including his signature first-round technical knockout of Peter Quillin there in December 2015.
Jacobs, 29, remains highly interested in fighting Golovkin, said Haymon’s spokesman Tim Smith.
Golovkin, 34, has knocked out 23 consecutive opponents and won 17 consecutive middleweight title fights, causing some others, notably Canelo Alvarez, to pause before jumping into the ring with the Kazakhstan product who resides in Los Angeles and trains in Big Bear under Abel Sanchez.
Mendoza said he offered Golovkin and Jacobs a chance to take an interim fight before meeting next year, but said that was rejected.
“Honestly, it’s a good fight for the sport and I’m trying to be fair with Jacobs and Golovkin,” Mendoza said.
The debate over the purse split underlines why Mendoza said the WBA has turned away from its two-belt strategy, noting the WBA is down to one champion at 135 and 140 pounds and in all weight classes from 105-115.
“We were doing it like gold, silver and bronze, but the fans don’t like it and we considered the criticism of the media. I don’t want to affect the integrity and prestige of being a champion -- boxing already has more sanctioning bodies and more champions than it needs,” Mendoza said.
Also, Mendoza said the WBA has sent a letter to its heavyweight champion Tyson Fury requesting a “B” sample of a drug test after the “A” sample was returned positive for cocaine.
Fury has admitted to using cocaine, and withdrew from a scheduled Oct. 29 rematch with former long-reigning champion Wladimir Klitschko, whom Fury beat in November 2015.
The WBA could opt to strip Fury’s belt.
“We’ve previously sent him a notification for the medical report and got a report back from a psychologist saying [Fury] was under a major depression, that he could fight again in February or March,” Mendoza said. “ There are several things on the morals side with this. We cannot make a decision until we see the ‘B’ sample b. We’re waiting.”