Gennady Golovkin vs. Ryota Murata postponed due to travel restrictions
By Matt Lieberman: The December 29th unification fight between IBF middleweight champion Gennadiy ‘GGG’ Golovkin and WBA 160-lb champion Ryota Murata has been postponed due to travel restrictions to Japan. Golovkin vs. Murata had been scheduled to take place at the Super Arena, in Saitama, Japan.
The Japanese government is blocking foreign visitors at this time to as a precaution to prevent the spread of the mutated former of COVID-19, called the omicron variant.
ESPN is reporting the news of the December 29th Golovkin vs. Murata fight being postponed until 2022.
Golovkin vs. Murata to be rescheduled
There’s still no date for when the Golovkin-Murata fight will take place, but it’s likely to take place in the first quarter of the year, as long as the Japanese government allows foreign visitors back in the country.
The 39-year-old Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs) has been training in Hollywood, Florida for the fight against the 35-year-old Murata. This is an important fight for Golovkin because it’ll allow him to become a two-time middleweight unified champion.
Golovkin was a three-belt middleweight in September 2018 when he was beaten by Canelo Alvarez by a 12 round majority decision. Since that fight, Golovkin has won his last three fights.
With travel to Japan cut off, a logical move for Golovkin would be to take on WBC middleweight champion Jermall Charlo or WBO champion Demetrius Andrade.
Both of those fighters would jump at the chance to fight Golovkin next if they were offered the fight. However, it’s highly unlikely Golovkin will go in the direction of an interim fight against Jermall or ‘Boo Boo’ Andrade.
I am deeply disappointed that fight in Japan has been postponed but the health and safety of the public must always be the priority. I look forward to returning to the ring against Ryōta as soon as possible.
— Gennadiy Golovkin (@GGGBoxing) December 3, 2021
Fans want GGG to face Canelo, Charlo or Andrade
U.S boxing fans would prefer to see Golovkin fight Canelo, Charlo, or Andrade rather than Murata, who has already been beaten by Hassan N’Dam and Rob Brant.
Those are dangerous fights, and Golovkin likely wanted to want to risk the massive payday he’s going to be getting fighting Murata.
Where there could be a problem is if the travel restrictions to Japan last a year. Golovkin isn’t young enough to lose an entire year. GGG has already messed things up for himself by fighting only once a year since 2019.
Golovkin has been waiting around for a trilogy match with Canelo Alvarez, and that fight hasn’t happened. GGG would have likely gotten the third fight with Canelo by now if he’d beaten Demetrius or Charlo. Instead of fighting them, Golovkin has feasted on these three fighters:
- Steve Rolls
- Sergiy Derevyanchenko
- Kamil Szeremeta
Golovkin still has a lot of power, but he hasn’t been able to show his stuff because of his inactivity.
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