Report- Gennady Golovkin Will Fight Murata Not Canelo Late This Year
It looks like former Undisputed Middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin has settled on his next opponent, and it won’t be a bout with his rival, Canelo Alvarez. Rather, it appears Triple G will head to the “Land of the Rising Sun” for a unification showdown.
Mike Coppinger, insider for The Athletic, reported Thursday afternoon that the IBF 160 lb. world champ Triple G will take on Japan’s Ryota Murata, who owns the WBA’s world title. There have been numerous media reports that Golovkin has been interested in a unification fight at Middleweight and apparently, there’s a sizable financial guarantee for him to head to Japan for a week night fight in late December,
Source: Gennadiy Golovkin and Ryota Murata have an agreement in principle for a middleweight title unification fight Dec. 28 in Tokyo on DAZN. That’s Tuesday night in Japan, morning-time stateside. Plan is for both to stay busy with one fight beforehand, potentially on same card
— Mike Coppinger (@MikeCoppinger) May 27, 2021
As Coppinger relayed and several other boxing media members have reported recently, both fighters will likely take an easier fight this Summer before Golovkin and Murata fight each other, but that ‘s not certain.
As we wrote last month, there’s been debate about what kind of significant fight (besides Canelo) would be out there for the now 39 year old Golovkin.
After Canelo was stripped of the IBF portion of the championship Summer 2019 for failing to fight Sergiy Derevyanchenko, Golovkin, 41-1-1, jumped at the chance to fight the Ukranian #1 contender for the vacant belt in October of that year.
That was another hard-fought competitive battle that saw Triple G take a lot of punishment, yet still emerge victorious by decision to recapture a portion of the Middleweight crown. Still, there are several prominent analysts and observers that saw that fight the believe that his better days are clearly behind him. Even longtime trainer and boxing analyst Teddy Atlas went so far as to say Golovkin “looked like a shot fighter” that night with the Derevyanchenko.
After the Covid 19 shutdown of the sport for almost 90 days last year, Triple G finally fought his long-delayed IBF mandatory battle with Poland’s Kamil Szeremeta last December and scored an impressive, if not expected, 7th round KO.
As for Murata, he’s 16-2 as a pro, and won the WBA “regular” Middleweight belt with a second round KO of American Rob Brandt in Osaka, Japan, in July in 2019. He defended the title again by KO over lightly regarded Canadian Steven Butler in late December of that year in Yokohama, Japan. Murata hasn’t fought since.
So, it makes more sense that Murata was a “tune-up” type fight before taking only Golovkin.
The report that Triple G has decided to go the Middleweight Unification route all but nullifies that he will be fighting the man who took his 160. lb. Undisputed championships off of him three years ago.
That’s because Canelo Alvarez, who after a draw in their first bout won the second fight with Triple G by Split Decision in September of 2018, is now fighting at 168 pounds. And Alvarez has plainly said he will not be moving back down to try to make Middleweight.
And, Alvarez wants to be Undisputed at Super Middleweight, which means he’s looking to fight IBF World Champion, Caleb Plant.
Whether Golovkin fights a “stay busy” bout this Summer or points only towards fighting Murata on his turf at the end of the year, the bout to be televised through the DAZN streaming service at least in the US, if not also Europe.
Murata will likely get the bulk of PPV money exclusively in Japan for the proposed bout with Golovkin.
And, it’s looking less and less likely like a third Triple G-Canelo bout will become reality.