Senior Boxing Journalist @JamesDielhenn
Golovkin vs Derevyanchenko: The crunch behind a GGG punch
GGG vs Derevyanchenko, Saturday night at 2am, live on Sky Sports Action
Last Updated: 04/10/19 4:42pm
Three domestic boxers have fought Gennadiy Golovkin, four bones have been broken.
Two of Matthew Macklin's ribs, Martin Murray's nose and, most notoriously and seriously, Kell Brook's eye socket have been badly damaged by a man whose raw power is described like something unimaginable from a horror movie.
The victims of Golovkin speak about the brute force of his punches. There is nothing particularly clever, unlike the opponents of Vasiliy Lomachenko who describe his grace and genius. The contrast with Golovkin is stark - he simply punches harder than everybody else and has left a trail of destruction behind him to prove it.
Sergiy Derevyanchenko could be the latest crumpled body - he faces Golovkin on Saturday night at 2am, live on Sky Sports Action, in an IBF middleweight championship fight from Madison Square Garden, New York. Derevyanchenko is a tough customer but what Golovkin brings to the ring is unique.
"The body shots he hit me with? Something popped out of my stomach and it took my physio months to push it back in," remembered Murray who valiantly lasted 11 rounds in 2015.
"My nose? There's nothing I can do about it. I broke my nose in the fight but it didn't bend on the outside. He bent my nose on the inside.
"I'm still feeling it now. My nose has never been the same in the three-and-a-half years since I fought him so, when I retire, I'll need an operation - he should pay for it!"
Murray's is not the only life that has been altered since trading punches with Golovkin. Brook's orbital bone was smashed in a five-round defeat in 2016 and, in his very next fight, he broke the other eye's socket against Errol Spence Jr.
"It's a common injury you have in car crashes, because your face hits the dashboard and cracks the bone in the front of your face," Brook's trainer Dominic Ingle told Sky Sports at the time.
"When he got to the hospital I think the doctor said that any more punches on that and it could have been, not fatal, but it could have cost you your eye-sight."
Macklin's recovery from broken ribs after a three-round defeat in 2013 was agonising. What hurt most?
"Getting up in the morning, and going back to bed, and coughing!"
Kazakhstan's Golovkin held the world middleweight championships for eight years and, until Danny Jacobs took him the distance, he was on a 23-fight knockout run. The only blemishes on his 41-fight record are the draw and defeat to his great rival Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez, both of which he disputes.
In the past 18 months, Vanes Martirosyan and Steve Rolls were blasted away. In total, 35 of Golovkin's 41 fights have been stoppage victories.
"He had a Mike Tyson-like reputation," says Murray. "We had the mentality that we had to get through the worst day of our life to have the best day."
Golovkin also had, according to the Brits with the broken bones, far more than raw power. What became impossible to resist was how he manoeuvred himself into positions to unleash that power in so many different ways.
"I thought everybody he fought was beaten before they got in the ring," Murray continued. "As soon as they felt his power they were psychologically beaten.
"I felt his power in the first round. I thought, 'I can deal with this', but I had prepared myself for much more.
"But it's the culmination of his range, distance, how he cuts off the ring, gives you no breathing space and his punch variety. Everything got to me.
"He works out the equation when he's in the ring. If he can bang somebody out, he does that. I gave the problem of a high, tight guard but he solved it."
Murray now jokes it was a "bit stupid" to go on into the 11th round.
Two years earlier, Macklin was aware of stories that a relatively-unknown Golovkin had left wreckage in Freddie Roach's gym, but still took him on.
"He didn't catch me with anything to the head," Macklin said. "But I felt the weight of his jab and a couple of stiff right hands - I knew I didn't want to get hit by a big hook.
"I was preoccupied which is the reason he got me to the body.
"He carried power, man. I've never been hit like that to the body, ever. I felt paralysed for 30 seconds or so through pain. It was excruciating.
"Over the years I'd taken good body shots and been winded, but never gone down. This time I couldn't suck it up. It was different… just, different."
Brook needed the towel to be thrown in after five rounds after a Golovkin punch broke his eye socket. The angle of the incoming blows was what hurt him.
"He was weird, the way he threw his shots," Brook said at the time. "They landed when you didn't expect him to chuck them. But he is so strong and powerful, you know you're being hit.
"I've never been in with anyone with that much power. It was weird power as well, hard to explain but it is definitely powerful. Some fighters have a sharp, snappy power, others have that really dense power and his was in the middle. All I can say is that even when he hits you on the arm, you know you've been hit.
"It's easy looking at it and seeing him throw those weird shots, but until you're in there and it's actually happening to you, you can't really prepare for it."
Will preparation help Derevyanchenko? Golovkin is 37 now but the power that has broken bones remains.