Barker looking past Rotolo bout, wants Lee, Macklin or Murray

matthew macklin darren barker andy lee  photoBy Scott Gilfoid: Former EBU middleweight champion Darren Barker (24-1, 15 KO’s) isn’t satisfied with just the opponent that he has in front of him for this Saturday night against little known Simone Rotolo (35-3, 5 KO’s), Barker wants Andy Lee, Matthew Macklin or Martin Murray after that.

Barker said thesun.co.uk “I think I have Andy’s number, as I do the rest of the guys in the division.”

It’s hard to take Barker seriously with him bragging about himself in such glowing terms. I could understand him yapping away like that if he had actually beaten Sergio Martinez in their fight in 2011 instead of fighting conservatively and getting knocked out.

I think Murray might be someone that would be interested in facing Barker in the near future. I mean, Murray is facing Sergio Martinez next month on April 27th, and he’s expected to lose that fight by a knockout. Once Murray loses the fight, he’ll be likely licking his wounds and looking for a nice little comeback fight to get a ‘W’ in the win column, and I could see him resorting to fighting Barker.

It’s not a fight that would be moving Murray’s career forward because Barker isn’t ranked in the top 15, but it’s a good fight that will keep him busy while Murray plots his next move.

Frankly, I think Murray is making a horrendous mistake by going after Martinez instead of the much easier IBF middleweight champion Daniel Geale. That’s actually a winnable fight for Murray, but definitely not Martinez, Gennady Golovkin or Peter Quillin. Those guys are a couple of levels above him in the talent department.

Barker needs to worry about trying to get past Rotolo on Saturday because it’s not a given that Barker will win that fight. I can just picture a distracted Barker, thinking about the glory in fights against Murray, Lee and Macklin, getting beaten by Rotolo by an upset.

Macklin also isn’t going to take a fight with Barker because Macklin is looking to get a title shot against one of the champions, and a fight with Barker is a huge backwards move for him.


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