Golovkin taking Murata seriously for April 9th fight
By Jim Calfa: Gennadiy Golovkin isn’t taking WBA middleweight champion Ryota Murata lightly for their fight next month on April 9th in Japan. Both 160-lb champions haven’t fought in ages, making this one a difficult one to predict.
Golovkin-Murata will meet in the main event on DAZN on April 9th at the Super Arena, Saitama, Japan.
It’s a unification fight at 160, but it doesn’t mean as much because Murata isn’t viewed as being in the same class talent-wise as middleweight champions Jermall Charlo and Demetrius Andrade. Those are the guys Golovkin should be fighting if he wanted to impress fans.
U.S boxing fans wanted to see Golovkin fight one of the well-known middleweights like Demetrius Andrade and Jermall Charlo, but GGG will be making good money to fight the Japanese fighter in his homeland.
Also, it’s a fight that Golovkin can win, as long as he has something left in the tank at 40. Aside from that, Murata brings zero to the table in attracting interest from U.S fans because this is NOT the fight they wanted to see, not even close.
IBF middleweight champion Golovkin (41-1-1, 36 KOs) will be seeing action for the first time since 2020. He needs the victory over the 35-year-old Murata (16-2, 13 KOs) to potentially put himself in a position to face Canelo Alvarez on September 17th.
As for the 2012 Olympic gold medalist Murata, unbelievably, he hasn’t fought since 2019, and we don’t know what we’re going to get from him after nearly three years out of the ring.
We how bad Amir Khan looked recently after three years out of the ring, and he’s the same age as Murata. I think you get the picture.
Murata and Golovkin likely won’t be anywhere near their best. Still, the punching power, experience at the professional level, and overall talent of GGG should be enough for him to get the victory on April 9th.
Team Murata will have taken in-depth notes of Golovkin’s fight against Sergiy Derevyanchenko and his second clash with Canelo Alvarez and will have a game plan that involves a lot of body shots, pressure, and alternating angles of attack.
Murata looked like a completely different fighter in his rematch with Rob Brant in July 2019, stopping the American in two rounds by throwing nonstop power shots from the opening bell.
“He’s the pride and the star of his country,” Gennadiy Golovkin said to Ariel Helwani about Ryota Murata of Japan. “I know the organizers of this event. Everything will be top class, and I’m very excited to be a part of this amazing event. He’s an Olympic champion, and he’s the current world champion holding the WBA title,” said Golovkin.
It’s too bad Golovkin didn’t use the last two years to stay busy fighting contenders rather than waiting for a fight with Murata to take place all this time.
There are so many different fights that Golovkin could have taken that would have resonated more than his fight with Murata, but of course, they would have been riskier for him and likely not paid as well.
“It did take place, but that was a long time ago. It was not the pure sparring approach that he came to spar me. I learned during those sessions that Murata is a very serious fighter with a high boxing IQ,” said Golovkin about the sparring he did with Murata earlier in his career when he had come out of the Olympics.
Whatever took place years ago in the sparring between Golovkin and Murata has no bearing on what will take place inside the ring on April 9th. Both are older fighters now, inactive, and nearing the end of their careers.
This will likely be the end of his career for Murata should he lose because he’s not active enough, and he’s struggled against lesser fighters in defeats against Hassan N’Dam and Rob Brant.
The only reason Murata has a world title in his possession is that he beat Brant in their rematch to recapture the strap after losing to him in their first fight in 2018.
In his loss to Brant, Murata took a pounding as the American threw over 1000+ punches in that fight, many of them landing. Zhanibek Alimkhanuly recently stopped Brant in his last fight.
A fight between Golovkin and Zhanibek would be far more compelling to the hardcore boxing fans than seeing Gennady face Murata. The money that Golovkin will make against the Japanese fighter is the main lure.
If Golovkin loses to Murata, he’ll likely hang up his gloves because it’ll be a signal that he’s done. Gennadiy won’t get the trilogy match against Canelo if Murata beats him, and that’s the fight that is the biggest money match out there for him.
Unless Golovkin wants to stay around and fight WBC middleweight champion Jermall Charlo or Andrade, there will be no point in him continuing his career if he loses to Murata. It would be a signal that he’s washed up if he can’t beat a fighter like Murata.
On paper, Golovkin should destroy Murata within six rounds, but his inactivity and age could play an essential factor in this fight.
Golovkin didn’t look that great in his last fight against Kamil Szemereta in 2020, and that was a fight that fans weren’t eager to see.
One of the criticisms Golovkin has been getting from fans in the last four years is that he’s been fighting weak opposition when he has been active and not taking on the fighters that would help him stay popular and sharp.
In Golovkin’s three fights since his loss to Canelo in 2018, he’s beaten these easy marks:
- Steve Rolls
- Kamil Szeremeta
- Sergiy Derevyanchenko
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