FORMER world super-middleweight champion Carl Froch believes Kell Brook could be a hard night’s work for Gennady Golovkin, but is “disappointed” in the Kazakh fighter.
Brook, the IBF welterweight champion, will be jumping two weight divisions to take on IBF, WBC and WBA middleweight champion Golovkin at the O2 Arena in London.
Froch – who had been linked to a fight with ‘GGG’ before he he retired last year – sparred Brook in 2009, and expects the Sheffield star to give a good account of himself.
“When I sparred Kell, he was so difficult to hit. Don’t get me wrong, I could have leaned on him and put my weight on him but when I was sparring lighter fighters I tried to use my skill, rather than my weight,” Froch told Boxing News.
“I couldn’t out-skill him, and I wasn’t known as the most skilful fighter, I know that.
“Golovkin will probably push him back, lean on him and use the weight advantage but, at the minute, there doesn’t seem to be one. Obviously there will be one, but at the check weigh in Brook was heavy and looked in good shape.
“The more I look at it, the closer I think the fight is. It’s an exciting fight – whether you think Brook will get knocked out or not, you still want to watch it.”
Brook, naturally, is a hefty underdog with the bookmakers for his fight with ‘GGG’, who holds the highest knockout ratio in middleweight championship history.
However, the odds are the shortest they’ve been for a Golovkin fight since he boxed Grzegorz Proksa in 2012 and while Froch noted that is partly down to Brook’s talent, he also feels it says a lot about Golovkins record to date.
“I genuinely think Brook will give him far more trouble than anyone has done before and more than anyone is giving him credit for,” he continued.
“I think that because I’ve sparred Brook, he’s skilful, and I didn’t realise how much he struggled to get to 147lbs. I didn’t realise how big he was.
“Look at Golovkin’s CV, there’s no one on there. In terms of talent, Brook will be the best fighter he’s fought. Golovkin’s dangerous, a big puncher and he knocked out [Lucian] Bute in the amateurs so he can fight, but don’t be surprised if Brook gives him a really hard fight and goes the distance.”
Though the fight has generated an enormous amount of interest – and is easily the biggest contest either man will have been in so far – Froch is unimpressed with Golovkin’s decision to face a naturally smaller man.
Despite his ever-increasing stock and numerous world titles, Golovkin has struggled to secure the elite-level fights his obvious talents deserve.
“I am disappointed in Golovkin though, fighting someone smaller than him,” Froch said.
“He should pick on someone his own size, and if he can’t get fights at middle, why doesn’t he move up? He gave Canelo [Alvarez] stick for fighting [Amir] Khan, who was smaller.”