“I just heard that crack” – George Groves remembers fighting an early Gennady Golovkin and struggling to breathe
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Gennady Golovkin broke George Groves rib in a training session that left the Briton struggling to breathe.
The former middleweight pivot is one of boxing’s biggest pound-for-pound punchers and had a formidable aura around him during a sensational run between his debut and 2017.
Originally from Kazakhstan, the 39-year-old has never been arrested, or even knocked down, in boxing and has the power to make anyone’s life hell.
Former super middleweight world champion Groves discovered it with his own eyes when he fought it at the Summit in Big Bear Lake under the watchful eye of Abel Sanchez.
Despite the offer of protection, ‘Saint George’ refused and ended up with an extra hospital bill.
“So Gennady is wearing that body protector,” Groves said. Social Boxing. “It’s like an American football bulletproof vest.
“It’s that thin plastic thing and it goes around your ribs.” And he said, “Do you want one? And I said. “No, I’m not crazy! “
“He said, ‘Are you sure? Because Gennady wears one? And I said no because it would get in the way.
“So I did the first spar and it went well, but I’m breathing hard and I’m having a little trouble. I think we did three / four rounds and that was enough, he had other training partners there.
“It was his last week of fighting before he fought and I had just gotten off the plane after a knockout loss in front of everyone.
“So I said I had to do a little better next time. He asked again, “Do you want the seat belt?” And I said, ‘No I’m not ****, I don’t want it.’
“So we get involved and I’m doing a lot better this time around; I catch up with him, I stick to him a little but I am aware of the incapacity so I do not want to crack.
“Gennady is just brilliant, he’s got this phenomenal power and everything has to come from his lats, but he hits you and it’s a punch.
“I’m a cunning old dog now, I’ve been in this with everyone and you can’t get me touch-touch-whip and get weird – but he was!”
“I didn’t even know it was going to happen and it wasn’t like I could put my arm in it in time, but he made it through. I didn’t even see it coming.
“So I’m probably a little carried away, happy right hand that I was, then he does touch-touch-whip and I just hear that * crack *.
“There’s no help being 10,000 feet above sea level, but I can’t really get a lot of air and the air coming in is really, really painful. So I came back around and I was like, “I think he broke a rib.”
“I didn’t want to go out, but there isn’t much in there for me right now!” So we said, ‘Abel, he hurt his rib.’
“And he said, ‘Okay, do you know where the hospital is? “”
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