Tom Sorensen

Boxing: There is no next best thing to being there, but ...

Kazakhstan's Gennady Golovkin might be the world’s best boxer at any weigh.
Kazakhstan's Gennady Golovkin might be the world’s best boxer at any weigh. AP

If I don’t write about boxing, who will? One of my favorite fighters, Charlotte cruiserweight (200-pound limit) Quinton Rankin will headline a card at Grady Cole Center Oct. 19. Rankin, 11-3-1, is a cool combination of power and speed. Boxing is like almost everything else: There is no next best thing to being there.

But if you want to watch a fight on TV, wait for Saul “Canelo” Alvarez versus Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in the fall of 2017. This is boxing’s next super fight. Alvarez, who lost only to Floyd Mayweather, is the bigger name, and he has improved markedly since the Mayweather loss three Septembers ago. (He’s out for the rest of 2016 with a fractured thumb.) Alvarez’s body punching is superb. But I’ll take Golovkin, a middleweight who is undefeated, against anybody. He’s smart and aggressive, and no matter where you are in the ring, there he is. He’s knocked out 32 of the 35 fighters he’s faced. Pound for pound, he’s the best in the world.

All right, there might be an atomweight boxer (102-pound limit) who is as good or better. But I’ve never met one.

About the local boxing cards: Usually it’s the same people who were at the last Charlotte event and the one before that. It’s almost private, a gathering of about 200 to 400 fans. It’s like going to a reunion.

Tom Sorensen is a retired Charlotte Observer columnist. Sign up for his newsletter, and follow him on Twitter: @tomsorensen

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