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Golovkin-Murray winner will be mandatory challenger to Cotto-Canelo winner

Canelo Alvarez Gennady Golovkin Miguel CottoBy Dan Ambrose: A win for WBA World middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin (31-0, 28 KOs) in his next fight against #1 WBC Martin Murray (29-1-1, 12 KOs) on February 21st will set Golovkin up as the WBC mandatory challenger to the winner of the proposed fight between WBC middleweight champion Miguel Cotto (39-4, 32 KOs) and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (44-1-1, 31 KOs) on May 2nd.

This would then put the Cotto-Canelo winner in a situation where they’ll need to decide whether it’s worth it or not to be the WBC 160 pound champion when they would soon be forced to defend their strap against a real middleweight in Golovkin.

The Cotto-Canelo fight is expected to take place at a catch-weight of 155 pounds. This would be Cotto’s second fight at middleweight and his second catch-weight fight instead of fighting at the full weight for the middleweight division.

Golovkin, besides being the WBA 160 pound champion, he’s also the interim WBC middleweight champion after beating Marco Antonio Rubio by a 2nd round knockout last October.

It would be a pity if the winner of the Cotto-Canelo fight decided it would be safer for them to vacate the WBC 160 pound title rather than facing Golovkin. It would obviously make them look like they were nothing but a paper champion if they vacated at the first sign of danger, but that’s definitely a possibility.

Cotto recently defeated 39-year-old Sergio Martinez by a 10th round stoppage last summer in a fight where Martinez’s surgically repaired knee didn’t look physically strong.

It was good match-making by team Cotto to pick out Martinez for a fight rather than step it up against the healthy Golovkin for a fight, but the victory was a rather empty one for Cotto because he didn’t get full credit for the win by a lot of boxing fans.

Cotto’s trainer Freddie Roach believed that there was nothing wrong with Martinez and that he was in good shape for the fight, but it didn’t look that way to many boxing fans in watching how Martinez moved around the ring. He moved like he had gravel in the knee joint of his surgically repaired right knee.

Golovkin will be fighting for the WBC title regardless of whether the Cotto vs. Canelo winner vacates the title. It’ll just mean that Golovkin will need to face someone like #2 WBC David Lemieux for the WBC belt. A fight between Golovkin and Lemieux sets up a big mismatch potential though because Lemieux has very little experience, and he’s not faced anyone good since his stoppage loss to Rubio in 2011.

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