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Arum wants Ryota Murata vs. Gennady Golovkin on PPV in fall

Gennady Golovkin

By Chris Williams: Bob Arum of Top Rank wants to make a fight between his guy WBA World middleweight champion Ryota Mura (14-1, 11 KOs) and WBA Super World 160 lb. champion Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin (37-0-1, 33 KOs) in Japan in the Fall. Murata is Golovkin’s WBA mandatory challenger, and Arum wants to make the fight between them later this year if Saul Canelo Alvarez is unavailable due to him being suspended.

Arum will place the Golovkin vs. Murata fight on PPV in Japan, and he believes the Japanese fighter will win because he’s a little bit taller than GGG. Canelo is going to find out how long his suspension is on Wednesday when he meets with the Nevada State Athletic Commission in their hearing on his two positive tests for clenbuterol.

Murata being Golovkin’s WBA mandatory is kind of confusing. Daniel Jacobs is fighting Maciej Sulecki on April 28 for the WBA mandatory spot. Jacobs believes he’ll be the WBA mandatory for Murata if he beats Sulecki. The WBA needs to reduce the amount of champions they have in the middleweight division. Having two champions at 160 makes it confusing for boxing fans.

Golovkin fighting Murata in Japan could end badly for GGG if the judging isn’t up to par. Golovkin might want to think about forgetting about boxing and instead stepping on the gas to go for a knockout. Golovkin boxed his last two opponents Canelo and Daniel Jacobs, and he almost lost both of those fights.

Golovkin doesn’t have good enough boxing skills to win clear decisions when facing good opposition. The reason why Golovkin will need to travel to Japan to face Murata is because he’s a tremendous star over there. Murata’s fight earlier today against Emmanuel Blandamura was seen by over 16 million viewers in Japan. That’s an incredible amount of fans in proportion to the size of Japan, which has a population of 127 million.

Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffler was talking up a fight between GGG and Murata on Sunday. Loeffler wants Golovkin to fight Murata at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan. He says it’ll sell it out. It has a seating capacity of 55,000.

“The fighter I want is Golovkin,” Murata said via ESPN. “I want to keep improving, and I’m thankful for the support of my fans in Japan and worldwide.”

Golovkin vs. Murata won’t register in the U.S, but it will at least interest the boxing fans in Japan. Golovkin is better off fighting the likes of Jermall Charlo, Demetrius Andrade or Daniel Jacobs if he wants to interest the boxing fans in the states. Murata hasn’t won over a fan base in the U.S. He’s too slow and hittable for him to create a huge fan base in the U.S. Murata also doesn’t help himself that he always fights weak opposition. He’s never fought a good middleweight since he turned pro.

Murata, 32, defeated former European middleweight champion Emmanuel Felice Blandamura (27-3, 5 KOs) by an 8th round knockout on Sunday in his first defense of his WBA ‘regular’ title at the Arena Yokohama, in Yokohama, Japan. The fight was televised in the United States on ESPN and ESPN Deportes early on Sunday at 8:00 am ET. Murata flattened Blandamura, 38, with a right to the head in round 8.

The referee Raul Caiz Jr. hurriedly stopped the contest right away. Caiz didn’t try and help Blandamura off the canvas the way that referee Yuji Fukuchi did with Bruno Sandoval after he was knocked down by Murata in the 3rd round of their fight in December 2016. That was the strangest looking fight I’ve ever seen. Murata knocked Sandoval down, and it was clear that the Mexican fighter was badly hurt. Instead of waving the fight off right that moment, the referee tried to help Sandoval in getting up off the canvas by pulling him by one arm to get him back on his feet. Sandoval wound up falling down twice before the fight was stopped.

Murata was nailing the weak-punching Blandamura with right hands at will throughout the fight. Blandamura was hurt in rounds 3, 5, 6, 7 and 8. Blandamura was moving most of the time, but Murata did an admirable job of cutting off the ring and punishing him against the ropes. The size and power advantage for Murata made the fight a farce from the earliest moments.

Murata is co-promoted by Bob Arum of Top Rank and Akihito Honda of Teiken Promotions. Arum promotes Murata’s fights in the U.S, whereas Honda promotes his fights in Japan.

“Another great knockout victory for the champion, Ryota Murata. Next stop: Las Vegas,” Arum said via “Murata has such a big size advantage over Golovkin, which will enable him to win the fight,” Arum said.

It’s unlikely that Murata will be able to fight Golovkin later this year, because he’ll be booked up with a second fight against Saul Canelo Alvarez unless the Nevada State Athletic Commission gives the Mexican fighter a full 1-year suspension without reducing the time.

Murata didn’t show anything against Blandamura that suggests that he would beat Golovkin. That would be an easy fight for Golovkin. Murata is slow, and he telegraphs his right hand, and that’s pretty much his only weapon.

The 6’0” Murata is 1 ½ inches taller with a 2 inch reach advantage over the 5’10 ½” Golovkin. That’s not a huge size advantage that Arum believes it to be. It’s doubtful that Arum really believes that Murata can beat Golovkin, but it’s a fight that would make a lot of money in Japan. Murata is a big star in Japan due to him winning an Olympic gold medal in the 2012 Olympics. Murata is an even bigger star than former two division world champion Naoya Inoue, and he’s a far more dominating fighter than Murata.

Murata will next be facing 2012 Brazilian Olympian Esquiva Falcao (20-0, 14 KOs in a voluntary defense in June or July in Las Vegas, Nevada. That’s a fight that Murata could very well lose. Falcao looked better than Murata the last time the two of them fought. Murata and Falcao fought in the finals of the 2012 London Olympics with the Japanese fighter winning a highly questionable 14-13 decision. The fight easily could have gone to Falcao, but that was the Olympics in which Murata was given wins in three of his fights that he appeared to lose. Boxing News 24 had Falcao beating Murata.

The scoring for that Olympics was all over the place. British heavyweight Anthony Joshua won a gold medal after winning three controversial decisions. The two fights that really stood out for Joshua were his questionable wins over Roberto Cammarelle of Italy and Erislandy Savon of Cuba. With the fights being 12 rounds in the pro ranks, perhaps Murata will look better against Falcao than he did in the Olympics. For Murata, this will be the third time he’s fought in the U.S. Murata’s two previous fights in the States were mismatches against Gunnar Jackson in November 2015 and George Tahdooahnippah in July 2016.

Murata came into the Blandamura fight on Sunday after having beaten Hassan N’Dam by an 7th round stoppage last October in their rematch. Murata lost their first fight by a 12 round split decision in May of 2017. Some boxing fans felt that N’Dam should have lost that fight too. It was close. Murata was eating jabs all night long and getting out-boxed N’Dam. I personally feel that the judges did a fine job of scoring it in favor or N’Dam. Murata was eating too many shots, and he did not look good in that fight at all. In the rematch, Murata was a lot better, but he didn’t do enough in the first fight to deserve the win.

Murata connected on 154 of 368 shots for a connect percentage of 42, according to CompuBox’s stats. For his part, the 38-year-old Blandamura landed 53 of 289 shots for an 18 percent connect percentage. The punch stats showed that the fight was a huge mismatch from start to finish.

Billy Joe Saunders defeated Blandamura by an 8th round knockout four years ago on July 26, 2014. Blandamura was then stopped shortly after that by Michel Soro by an 8th round knockout. Blandamura came back from that loss to win his four fights against weak opposition before facing Murata on Sunday and getting stopped in the 8th round. There’s something about the 8th round that has been causing Blandamura o fall apart in that round. He now has three 8th round knockout losses on his 11-year pro resume.

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