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Gennady Golovkin makes his power move against Dominic Wade

Gennady Golovkin makes his power move against Dominic Wade

Gennady Golovkin of Kazakhstan punches Dominic Wade on his way to a second-round victory by TKO during a unified middleweight title fight at The Forum on April 23.

(Harry How / Getty Images)

Gennady Golovkin stated his case for recognition as the best fighter in the world Saturday by dominating Dominic Wade at the Forum, and he also ratcheted up the pressure on Mexico’s Saul “Canelo” Alvarez to accept his challenge.

“Give me my belt . . . I want my belt,” Golovkin said after knocking out Wade late in the second round with a violent right hand to the jaw.

The message was for World Boxing Council middleweight champion Alvarez, who, if he beats England’s Amir Khan on May 7, has 15 days to either begin negotiations with World Boxing Assn. and International Boxing Federation champion Golovkin (35-0, 32 knockouts) or watch the belt be stripped and given to the pride of Kazakhstan who now resides in Los Angeles.

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Golovkin wants to fight Alvarez for the WBC belt, but it’s uncertain how committed Alvarez, 25, and his promoter Oscar De La Hoya are to the idea, given the experience and power punching of Golovkin.

By dealing Wade (18-1) his first defeat, stopping him with 23 seconds left in the second round, Golovkin posted his 22nd consecutive knockout and won his 16th straight WBA title fight — four shy of former middleweight champion Bernard Hopkins’ record.

“His power is real,” Wade said. “Great champion, does everything well.”

Said Golovkin: “I’m here now, and I’m here to stay.”

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Wade sought to keep Golovkin at bay with his jab in the early going, but Golovkin landed shots to Wade’s body and head before the champion fired a power punch that caught Wade on the left ear and sent him to the canvas seconds before the first-round bell.

Wade landed a brief combination to Golovkin’s face in the second, then was decked again, falling to the ropes because of a hard left uppercut to the head followed by a power punch on the chest.

Wade barely rose at the eight-count, but then was sent crashing down for good on a barrage capped by a power punch to the jaw — Golovkin holding his right fist upward in a sort of humble pose as referee Jack Reiss counted Wade out.

A sellout crowd of 16,353 roared as Golovkin opened his post-fight remarks with, “Muchas gracias, my friends,” which could be interpreted as a shot at Alvarez — that if he doesn’t want to please his fan base, Golovkin will.

“I need a big name to please the fans . . . I’m very happy to give the fans a great show, and I’m very happy they came and had a great time,” Golovkin said.

The convincing triumph should move Golovkin past Saturday’s other champion, flyweight Roman Gonzalez of Nicaragua, who won less dramatically, by unanimous decision over McWilliams Arroyo.

Gonzalez (45-0), the unbeaten WBC flyweight champion, did show the might within a 112-pounder.

Unyielding with a lasting tank of resolve, Gonzalez maintained a deliberate, punishing attack of uppercuts to the face, combinations to the body and a showcase of his disciplined preparation.

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He cruised to victory by scores of 119-109, 119-109 and 120-108 over Puerto Rico’s Arroyo.

The decision snapped Gonzalez’s streak of 10 consecutive knockouts, but little else diminished him against a game challenger who absorbed 360 punches and landed 193 himself.

“This shows I can win either by knockout or going the distance,” said Gonzalez, who has knocked out 38 of his foes. “My conditioning was great.

“I wanted to fight and brawl and counter, but it was difficult because he moves quite a bit and was hard to hit.”

Arroyo (14-3) was left marked under both eyes and bruised at the forehead by Gonzalez’s precision attack that twice jarred the challenger’s head back in the 10th round.

lance.pugmire@latimes.com

Twitter: @latimespugmire


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